b. 18 May 1852; d. 12 October 1934
Gertrude Kasebier was born in Iowa, began taking photographs in the early nineties, and in 1897 opened her first portrait studio in New York City. She was the first woman to be elected to the prestigious Linked Ring, and was also a founder-member of the Photo-Secession, her portraits standing out over the work of her contemporaries. A contemporary critic praised her for haing done more for artistic portraiture than any other of her time (painter or photographer) by her sense of "what to leave out." Her work was featured in the first issue of Camera Work.
She was keen on allegorical themes, and one of her series was on motherhood. It was said of her that her purpose in taking photographs was "not to inform, but to share an experience, to evoke an emotional response from the viewer."
Some of her fine platinum prints remain.
© Robert Leggat, 2000.