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Portrait of Frederick Langenheim
William Langenheim (American, born Germany, 1807 - 1874)
8.9 × 7 cm (3 1/2 × 2 3/4 in.)
This daguerreotype portrait of Frederick Langenheim by his brother and studio partner, William, displays a masterful control of light. The fine detail reveals even the minute check pattern of Frederick's vest and the subtle striping of his topcoat. He sits quietly, looking directly into the camera and holding what appears to be a closed daguerreotype case in his hands.
Daguerreotypes were very delicate and the image could be scratched rather easily, so they were frequently mounted behind a glass and mat in a velvet-lined case. The Langenheims may have used this accomplished portrait in their studio window display to entice potential customers. The embossed word "Exchange" on the case lining indicates the street where their Philadelphia studios were located.
The Art of the Daguerreotype (April 14 to July 12, 1998)
- The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), April 14 to July 12, 1998
In Focus: Daguerreotypes (November 3, 2015 to March 20, 2016)
- The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 3, 2015 to March 20, 2016