Adolphe Braun (1812-77) was one of the most influential French photographers of the 19th century, best known for his floral still lifes, Parisian street scenes, and grand Alpine landscapes. He used contemporary innovations in photographic reproduction to market his photographs worldwide as well as to reproduce famous works of art to mass audience, which helped advance the field of art history.
Trained as a textile designer, Adolphe Braun began his photography career in 1853. He created a catalog of photographs of flowers for designers and art students providing them with a source of natural models. This herbarium earned him a medal at the 1855 Paris Exposition Universelle.
In 1866, he started photographing paintings, drawings, lithographs, engravings, sculpture and other works of part in the Louvre and other places in France as well as treasures in foremost museums and private collections in the Vatican, the Netherlands, Austria and Italy. Photography historian Naomi Rosenblum suggests that Braun’s detailed reproductions of works of art in European museums brought these works to art students in North America, providing a major catalyst for the field of art history in the United States.
Some of his works are collected in a photo book ‘Image and Enterprise‘