Nadar

WRITER, GRAPHICAL ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHER (FRANCE)
BORN 5 May 1820, Paris - DIED 20 Mar 1910, Paris
REAL NAME Tournachon, Gaspard-Félix
GRAVE LOCATION Paris: Père Lachaise, Rue du Repos 16 (division 36, 1ere ligne)

Nadar was born as Gaspard-Félix Tournachon in Paris. He was the son of a published and he was educated in Paris before he moved to Lyon to study medicine (1837). In 1838 he continued his studies in Paris. There he drew caricatures and wrote essays and satirical articles. He became a well known person in Paris.

Adophe Bertsch and Camille d'Arnaud taught him photography and in 1854 he started his own studio. He portrayed many celebrities and experimented with photography from balloons and into catacombs and sewers.

Initially he worked with his brother Adrien, but after the latter started using the name "Nadar le jeune" and refused to stop doing this he filed a lawsuit that he finally won in 1859. By then his brother was bankrupt and a broken man.

Together with his son Paul, Nadar performed the first photo interview ever in 1886. They interviewed Michel-Eugène Chevreul who reached the age of 100 in that year.

Among the celebrities he photographed were Honoré de Balzac, Julia Bartet, Sarah Bernhardt, Sophie Croizette, Alexandre Dumas père, Franz Liszt, Eugène Pelletan, Giochinno Rossini and George Sand.

Related persons
• photographed Balzac, Honoré de
• photographed Bartet, Julia
• photographed Bernhardt, Sarah
• photographed Croizette, Sophie Alexandrine
• photographed Desbordes-Valmore, Marceline
• photographed Favre, Jules
• photographed Liszt, Franz
• photographed Mérode, Cléo de

Sources
| Cleveland Museum of Art
Nadar (1820–1910) | Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Images

The grave of Nadar at Père Lachaise, Paris.
Picture by Androom (28 Aug 2001)

 


Nagel, Otto

Published: 1 Jan 2006
Last update: 7 Nov 2010