Gustave Marissiaux

1872, Marles (France) - 1927 Cagnes-sur-mer (France)

Gustave Marissiaux is one of the most important turn of the century pictorialists. During his lifetime he was internationally recognized and honoured but after his death his work was fast forgotten. It’s only in 1980 that his negatives were saved by Marc-Emmanuel Mélon and that his important role in the history of photography became known.

Gustave Marissiaux lived in Liège (Belgium) where he worked as a portrait photographer. But he was also an active art photographer and member of the "Association Belge de la Photography" and the "Société française de Photographie". In his artwork he used the Platinum Print, Bromoil, Sury Process and the Photogravure.


The work we present here are Photogravures from his Portfolio "Visions d’Artistes" (1908).Visions d’Artistes is his Opus Magnum and gives an overview of his photographs taken between 1899 and 1908. The portfolio is divided in four parts : an overview of 7 photographs, "La terre D’Armor" (France), "Venise" (Italy) and "La Terre Wallonne" (Belgium). Gustave Marissiaux made most of his photographs during his journeys to France and Italy. In 1903 he got the order to photograph the coalmines in Liège (Belgium). He made fabulous work there : the photographs combine the documentary aspect with the atmosphere of pictorialism. Some of the images are even close to modernism.

There are two versions of the Portfolio : one is printed on Japanese paper and the other on Old Holland paper. We sell two versions of the Portfolio which are both on Old Holland paper. One copy we have is complete with original cover and an introduction by Auguste Donnay. The second copy is an incomplete version without cover or introduction, of which we sell the photogravures seperately. All these photogravures come from the editor’s archives (H. Vaillant-Carmanne, Liège)


Marc-Emmanuel Mélon, "Gustave Marissiaux - La possibilité de l'art", Charleroi, 1997, Muséee de la photographie, ISBN 2-87183-029-0

Margeret Harker, Pool Andries & Roger Coenen, "Kunstfotografie rond 1900", Brussel, 1983, Het Gemeentekrediet van België

Claude Magelhaes & Laurent Roosens, "De fotokunst in België 1839-1940", Antwerpen, 1970, Het Sterckshof, Provinciaal museum voor ambachten

Steven F. Joseph, Tristan Schwilden & Marie-Christine Claes, "Directory of photographers in Belgium 1839-1905", Antwerpen, 1997, Museum voor fotografie Antwerp, ISBN 90-6174-837-2

Georges Vercheval, "Pour une histoire de la photographie en Belgique", 1993, Charleroi, Musée de la Photographie Charleroi, ISBN 2-80783-18-5

Rüdiger Joppien & Claudia Gabriele Philipp, "Die Kunstphotographie um 1900, die Sammlung Ernst Juhl", 1989, Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe

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