Théodore Brauner

(1914 - 2000)

In 1931, Theodore Brauner joins the Surrealist group Alge in Bucharest. In 1934, he creates his first photographs without the use of a camera. He calls these works Solarfixes (they are not photograms, as he eliminates not only the camera, but also the darkroom).

Brauner leaves Romania in 1942 and arrives in Israel in 1944. His Solarfixes are exhibited for the first, and the last, time in Jerusalem (1955). These artworks on light sensitive paper, he considers his most important achievement, though his accomplishments in photography proper also make him one of the great practitioners of the art.


The Masks

"The Masks" is a series of photographs of found anthropomorphisms. Brauner’s playful sensibility and curiosity enhanced a natural "framing" instinct that sought out the humanity in things and helped him encounter echoes of the human visage in the everyday landscape. A genie appears in the gears of a giant industrial machine; an authoritarian idol in the face of a short-wave radio; and an imp in a corkscrew. Sometimes the resemblance of an inanimate object or correlation of objects to a face is inherent, but more than often, it results from subtle framing. The more ingenious the framing, the more Brauner’s quest for the anthropomorphic takes on a spiritual quality—proving that man’s creations bear his likeness in endless variation.

Inquiries welcome. Exhibition catalogue available.