Florence Henri’s (1893 – 1982) innovative works – exploring the mechanics of perception through manipulation of mirrors and prisms, reflections, framing, experiments with photomontage, multiple exposures, and photograms in abstract compositions, still lifes, self-portraits, nudes and street photographs.
Trained as a pianist, during the World War I she abandoned her musical career to pursue painting. It was in 1927 at age 34 when she found photography for the first time enrolling at the Bauhaus in Dessau, where studied it with László Moholy-Nagy. The following year she left the Bauhaus and in 1929 moved to Paris where established herself as a photographer and the opened portrait studio soon rival that of Man Ray. She also taught classes and among her students were such future prominent photographers as Gisèle Freund and Lisette Model.
“What I want above all is to compose the photograph as I do with painting. Volumes, lines, shadows and light have to obey my will and say what I want them to say. This happens under the strict control of composition, since I do not pretend to explain the world nor to explain my thoughts.”