Wilhelm von Gloeden - Cain
Wilhelm von Gloeden
Gummidruck auf Höchheimer Papier.
The theme of “Cain” is undoubtedly among the most important motifs painted by Wilhelm von Gloeden. Ulrich Pohlmann points out that it had its iconographic model in Hippolyte Flandrin’s oil painting Jeune homme nu assis au bord de la mer, figure d’étude of 1835/36 (see Ulrich Pohlmann, Wilhelm von Gloeden – Sehnsucht nach Arkadien, Berlin 1987, pp. 38f.) The imagery of a young man lost in thought was frequently picked up and copied throughout the 19th century. Responding to major demand for his “Cain” after 1900, von Gloeden commissioned an etching to be produced on the basis of this photograph. This large-format photograph, however, is a rare gum bichromate print on Höchheimer paper, a photographic process that was only used for a small number of years in the early 20th century, as the inventor, Albert Höchheimer, had become insolvent.
We would like to thank Ulrich Pohlmann from the Photographic Collection of the Münchner Stadtmuseum (Munich City Museum) for his kind information.
Ulrich Pohlmann, Wilhelm von Gloeden - Sehnsucht nach Arkadien, Berlin 1987, ill. p. 37 (variant)