Born June 16, 1877 in California, Banfield was part of the Oakland salon pictorialists. The 1900 census has him living on J. Street, Benicia, Benicia Township, Solano with his brother-in-law Seneca A. Deuel. He later lived in Oakland during both the 1910 and 1920 census.
He has been incorrectly identified by many sources as female. These sources may have been confusing Banfield with his sister Aetheline, a photographer in her own right.
Some of the information in this bio is courtesy of Teri Spraggins, who is a relative of the Banfield family.
Banfield started in photography by making landscapes with his sister Aetheline Banfield Deuel. When she went to work with her second husband, Arthur Clarence Pillsbury of Pillsbury Picture Studios, Jesse entered his "dryad period" (See 1913 Camera Craft Magazine, San Francisco -- Contents in this issue include: The Woodland Dryad (Frontspiece) by Jesse T. Banfield and The Work of Jesse T. Banfield.).
Banfield exhibited in various salons between 1910 and 1917, including the Seventh American Photographic Salon at the John Herron Art Institute; the Ninth American Photographic Salon-1912-1913 at the Art Institute of Chicago; and the International Exhibition of the London Salon of Photography, Galleries of the Royal Society.
His work was also reproduced in "Architecture & Landscape Gardening of the Exposition," Paul Elder and Co., San Francisco, 1915. Besides this subject matter, he also took nudes in a pictorialist style (see above dryad information).
He was a partner in Banfield-Hullinger Studio in California, before 1920. He also worked at the University of California, Berkley, and amazingly had only one arm, the same as the photographer Josef Sudek. He would often use a soft-focus "verito lens", the same type of lens that Ansel Adams worked with until 1929.
He died Sept. 15, 1946 in Alameda Co., CA. He is represented in the SFMOMA collection.
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Medium Silver print
Photo Date 1910c Print Date 1910c
Dimensions 10-1/4 x 6-1/2 in. (260 x 165 mm)
Photo Country United States (USA)
Photographer Country United States (USA)
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