Henry White

The Garden Chair

11 September 1854
Category: 
This double portrait, titled "The Garden Chair", was one of the forty-four photographs included in "The Photographic Album for the Year 1855". The image, like all of the others in the album, was accompanied by a poem, in this case, "The Garden Chair, Two Portraits," by the nineteenth-century novelist and poet Dinah Maria Mulock (1826-1887). The poem suggests the meaning of White's photograph: it alludes to the subject of youth and old age, very similar to another photograph in "The Photographic Album for the Year 1855" by Fallon Horne. This theme of the cycles of life, with one life just beginning as another nears its end, is a common one in Victorian art and literature. Whether White made the photograph with the poem in mind or found it later is not known, but it is well-suited to images evoked by Mulock's text.
Artist
Title
The Garden Chair
Date
11 September 1854
Medium
Photograph
Materials
albumen silver print
Dimensions
17.8 x 14 cm
Nationality
British
Credit line
Purchased 1973
Accession number
20515.10