Constant Alexandre Famin

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Constant Alexandre Famin (1827 - 1888) was a French photographer who operated two studios in Paris (5, rue de Fleurus; 20, av. d’Orléans). Famin primarily photographed landscape and rural subjects, and was among the group of photographers to work in the forest of Fontainebleau and its environs in the late 1850s, 1860s, and 1870s. His rural photographs, and in particular his studies of peasants and farm animals, may have been intended as aids for painters, but even among these, Famin’s eye for complex, intriguing composition and his sharply detailed prints distinguish his work from that of other photographers of rural life. He also appears to have made architectural photographs at Bourges and Paris. The bulk of Famin’s known work is represented in the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, where, under the rule of the Dépôt Légal, he made two large deposits of his work in 1863 and 1874. Though he primarily produced albumen prints from collodion negatives, a group of stereoscopes deposited in 1859 at the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, under the name J. Tongue but now thought to be by Famin, suggests a greater diversity to his output than previously acknowledged [1].