The now-ubiquitous fisheye lens, enabling photographers a large range of optic and aesthetic vision, was not introduced to the market until 1938 by Nikon. This photograph, made with what is thought to be a prototype of the NIKKOR issue fisheye lens by Nikon, was made in 1931, ostensibly tested by the Asahi Shimbun Newspaper.
Not only is this print historic, but its subject is also prescient and charmingly idiosyncratic. Note the photographer's own shadow (shades of Lee Friedlander) in the foreground. The building is the Doshima Building in Osaka, a city heavily bombed in the War. The lighting of the scene and the tones of the photo are superb.
Translation of Japanese text on verso: Osaka Asahi Shinbun Photograph of the Do Building taken by Fish eye lens Publishing date: August 17, 1931.
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Medium Vintage Gelatin Silver Print
Photo Date 1931 Print Date 1931(Published)
Dimensions 13.5 x 10 in. (343 x 254 mm)
Photo Country Japan
Photographer Country Japan
Charles Schwartz Ltd.