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Polishing Brass (At Work)

Myra%20Albert%20Wiggins%2C%20%3Cb%3E%3Ci%3E%20Polishing%20Brass%20%28At%20Work%29%3C%2Fi%3E%3C%2Fb%3E%2C%20ca.%201903%2C%20platinum%20print%2C%20Gift%20of%20Robert%20and%20Shirley%20Benz%2C%20public%20domain%2C%2089.51.61
Myra Albert Wiggins, Polishing Brass (At Work), ca. 1903, platinum print, Gift of Robert and Shirley Benz, public domain, 89.51.61

Myra%20Albert%20Wiggins%2C%20%3Cb%3E%3Ci%3E%20Polishing%20Brass%20%28At%20Work%29%3C%2Fi%3E%3C%2Fb%3E%2C%20ca.%201903%2C%20platinum%20print%2C%20Gift%20of%20Robert%20and%20Shirley%20Benz%2C%20public%20domain%2C%2089.51.61 Myra%20Albert%20Wiggins%2C%20%3Cb%3E%3Ci%3E%20Polishing%20Brass%20%28At%20Work%29%3C%2Fi%3E%3C%2Fb%3E%2C%20ca.%201903%2C%20platinum%20print%2C%20Gift%20of%20Robert%20and%20Shirley%20Benz%2C%20public%20domain%2C%2089.51.61

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Details
Title

Polishing Brass (At Work)

Artist

Myra Albert Wiggins (American, 1869-1956)

Date

ca. 1903

Medium

platinum print

Dimensions (H x W x D)

image: 7 3/4 in x 6 in; sheet: 9 1/8 in x 6 3/8 in; mount: 18 1/4 in x 14 5/8 in

Collection Area

Photography; Northwest Art

Category

Photographs

Object Type

photograph

Culture

American

Credit Line

Gift of Robert and Shirley Benz

Accession Number

89.51.61

Copyright

public domain

Terms

photographs

platinum prints

polishing

Description

Working with glass negatives in her studio, a converted barnlike structure in Salem, Oregon, Wiggins created Polishing Brass by posing her housekeeper, Alma, in heirloom Dutch clothing. Photographed in the morning light of the studio window, the subject sits beside a handmade table, upon which rest a number of brass pots that Wiggins had purchased in Europe three years earlier. The romantic depiction of Dutch peasantry, who were thought to exemplify a robust and natural lifestyle, was a motif often idealized by artists of the Arts and Crafts movement. Regarded by the artist as one of her best genre pictures, Polishing Brass was printed in the subtle tones of sepia platinum on Japanese tissue.

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