Joseph Rentmeesters Maita Ossira (Madame Butterfly)
Medium Carbon print
Photo Date 1920s Print Date 1920s
Dimensions 6-7/8 x 5 in. (175 x 127 mm)
Photo Country Belgium
Photographer Country Belgium
Contact Alex Novak and Marthe Smith
About This Image
This elaborate costume does not detract from the beautiful and partially nude woman who wears it. Title and photographer's name is reversed out of the negative. Born in Brussels, Belgium in 1892, the young Joseph Rentmeesters decided early on a career in photography. He chose to portray opera stars, actors, dancers and variety theater artists from the 1920s and 1930s in a very unique fashion. The theatrical and the opera house scenes were rebuilt in the studio itself. These remarkable settings put the pose of the actor or dancer in context. While many of the settings were actually rebuilt in the studio, some were simply shot and then inserted on the negative. Rentmeesters' photographs for the Koninklijke Muntschouwburg in Brussels are among his best, including images from Madame Butterfly and Faust. Rentmeesters died in 1969.
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