Man Ray

Man Ray

Nationality: American

Birth Place: Philadelphia (Philadelphia county, Pennsylvania, United States)

Man Ray was an early twentieth-century photographer and painter of the Dadaist movement. He spent some of his earlier Dadaist career in New York, with Marcel Duchamp and Francis Picabia. They became the leading artists in the New York Dadaist movement. Man Ray moved to Paris in the 1920’s to continue his Dadaist and Surrealist work with the edgy artists there.

The Dadaist movement was a quest to challenge notions of art and literature by applying creative spontaneity. Dadaism takes its name from the French for a child’s rocking horse. The name is fitting as much of Dadaism displays a childlike curiosity and playfulness, a sense of humor, and a preference for the surreal.

Man Ray’s work challenged notions of form and representation in his paintings by favoring color and shape over realism. His early paintings were cubist, abstract works. One example of this style, “The Decanter”, is a brightly colored cubist painting that only resembles a literal decanter in the most abstract ways. It heavily relies on primary colors and shapes that seem a hodge-podge of other objects. These ideas could also be found in many of Man Ray’s later works.

Man Ray was also a very innovative photographer, developing at least two techniques with film. The “rayograph” was a method of creating images by manipulating objects on photosensitive paper. This created very interesting photographic images. “Solarization” was another method Man Ray developed, which created ghostly silver artifacts in motion picture.

Man Ray also worked in found art. One of his early successes was a sculpture called “The Gift”, which incorporated tacks and an iron. A later found object sculpture, “An Object to be Destroyed” used both found object sculpture and photography and is very well thought of. Man Ray’s work remains popular and influential to this day.


Man Ray Original Art Values Sold at Auction

Item Realized
MAN RAY (American, 1890-1976) Portrait of André Breton (in Front of Giorgio Chirico's Painting 'The Enigma of Day...
MAN RAY (American, 1890-1976)Portrait of André Breton (in Front of Giorgio Chirico's Painting 'The Enigma of Day'), 19...
Lot 74003
Auction 5132
Saturday, March 23, 2013
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976) Untitled (Abstract), 1958 Oil on canvas 8-1/2 x 12-1/2 inches (21.6 x 31.8 cm) Signed
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976)Untitled (Abstract), 1958Oil on canvas8-1/2 x 12-1/2 inches (21.6 x 31.8 cm)Signed ...
Lot 65316
Auction 5314
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976) Untitled (Abstract), 1952 Oil on panel 6-3/4 x 9 inches (17.1 x 22.9 cm) Signed and da
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976)Untitled (Abstract), 1952Oil on panel6-3/4 x 9 inches (17.1 x 22.9 cm)Signed and da...
Lot 65317
Auction 5314
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976) Man Ray Photographies 1920-1934 Paris, Second Edition, 1934 Texts by André Breton...
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976)Man Ray Photographies 1920-1934 Paris, Second Edition, 1934Texts by André Breton, Paul ...
Lot 13113
Auction 191750
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976) Self portrait, circa 1947 Gelatin silver, printed later 9-3/4 x 9-1/4 inches (24.8 x 23
Man Ray (American, 1890-1976)Self portrait, circa 1947Gelatin silver, printed later9-3/4 x 9-1/4 inches (24.8 x 23...
Lot 73422
Auction 5328
Wednesday, October 11, 2017

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