6 of 60 portraits of Thomas Hardy
by E.O. Hoppé
hand-pulled photogravure, 1914
11 1/8 in. x 8 in. (282 mm x 203 mm)
Artistback to top
- Emil Otto ('E.O.') Hoppé (1878-1972), Photographer and writer. Artist associated with 194 portraits, Sitter in 2 portraits.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Crane, David; Judd, Alan, First World War Poets, 2014, p. 14
- Judd, Alan; Crane, David, Character Sketches: First World War Poets, 1997, p. 12
- Prodger, Philip (appreciation) Pepper, Terence (appreciation), Hoppé Portraits: Society, Studio and Street, 2011 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 17 February to 30 May 2011), p. 93
- Rogers, Malcolm, Camera Portraits, 1989 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 20 October 1989 - 21 January 1990), p. 175 Read entry
By the time he was photographed by Hoppé, Thomas Hardy was the doyen of English letters. His great novels - Far from the Madding Crowd (1874), The Mayor of Casterbridge (1886), Tess of the d'Urbervilles (1891) - were long behind him, his epic drama The Dynasts (1904-8) was complete, and he was devoting his time to the writing of lyric poetry. Like his novels, his verses embody a tragic and ironic vision of life, and are written in language which is entirely idiosyncratic, at turns awkward, archaic and intensely poetic.
The photographer Hoppé was born in Munich, and moved to London in 1900, co-founding in 1909-10 the London Salon of Photography. When he photographed Hardy (at the sitter's home, Max Gate, near Dorchester) he was already one of the best known photographers in London, living at Millais' old house at 7 Cromwell Place, London, and working for Vanity Fair, The Sketch, The Tatler, and other periodicals. His compositions show a distinctive simplicity and comparatively restrained use of soft-focus (which must have appealed to editors), and he concentrated on the revelation of character by the most direct means.
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 281