Vechten, Carl Van. (1880–1964)
Original Van Vechten Photograph of the Cirque Medrano - "A little like a Toulouse-Lautrec, eh?"
Original photograph inscribed on the verso by the photographer to Kathleen Perfer. The image is of the famous Fratellini family of the The Cirque Medrano in Paris and is inscribed "Dearest Kathleen, this is one of the Fratellini being helped into the ring by the ring master at the Cirque Medrano, Oct. 1949. A little like a Toulouse-Lautrec, eh? L. [Love] Carlo." Embossed with the blindstamp "Photograph by Carl Van Vechten" lower right. 3.5 x 5.5 inches, tape along the right edge, a few nicks and bends, else fine. Postally cancelled on the inscription side.
Van Vechten, the celebrated American writer and photographer, was the literary executor of Gertrude Stein and a key figure of the Harlem Renaissance movement. He captured iconic images of all the key members in the worlds of Art, Theater, Music, and Literature. Van Vechten viewed his photography as a hobby; he never took commissions, he never sold photographs. He would grant permission to publish them, but had strict requirements to do so. He was a prominent fixture in 20th century photography collections with his work being included in such institutions as The Library of Congress, The Museum of The City of New York and The Smithsonian Institution.