# 43354

CLAUDET, Antoine (1797-1867)

Stereo-daguerreotype portrait of a gentleman holding a top hat.

$2,500.00 AUD

  • Ask a question

[London, circa 1855]. Stereoscopic daguerreotype with applied colour; each image 68 x 57 mm (sixth-plate), black passe-partout mount with two arched windows, overall dimensions 84 x 175 mm; verso with lithographically printed backing sheet: ‘UNDER THE PATRONAGE OF HER MAJESTY, / BY ROYAL LETTERS PATENT. / [within decorative element] MR. ANTOINE CLAUDET, / 107, REGENT STREET, / (QUADRANT, NEAR VIGO STREET.) / DAGUERREOTYPE MINIATURES. / PLAIN AND COLOURED STEREOSCOPIC DAGUERREOTYPE PORTRAITS.’; both images with a small amount of tarnishing at edges, otherwise in superb condition.

A rare stereoscopic daguerreotype portrait by French photographer and artist Antoine Claudet (1797-1867), one of the first commercial photographers to work in Britain.

Early in his career Claudet was co-owner and manager of a glass factory on the outskirts of Paris; he arrived in London in 1827 to open a shop in High Holborn to promote his firm’s products. In 1839 he purchased from Daguerre himself, for £200, a licence to practise photography using Daguerre’s new process, at the same time becoming sole agent for (and retailer of) Daguerre’s apparatus. A catalogue Claudet published in the summer of 1840 included the first outdoor views of the metropolis, a series of nude studies from life, and microscopic subjects magnified. In mid-1841, having developed a method of significantly reducing exposure time, he was in a position to more successfully compete with his main rival, Richard Beard: he could now specialise in daguerreotype portraiture. Claudet promptly opened his first studio, which was located on the roof of the Adelaide Gallery, behind St. Martin-in-the-Fields. His business became hugely successful, ensuring his reputation as London’s leading portrait daguerreotypist over the next two decades. He later operated a second studio at the Colosseum, Regent’s Park (1847-1851), but in 1851 relocated his entire business to 107 Regent Street, an establishment he dubbed his ‘Temple to Photography’.

In 1853 Claudet was honoured with the appointment as ‘Photographer-in-ordinary’ to Queen Victoria: this provides us with a terminus post quem for the present daguerreotype portrait, as Claudet’s label explicitly advertises this royal patronage of his studio.