Clarence H. White (U.S., 1871-1925):  "What Was It Trying To Remind Me Of?"

Title page design, collodion print and ink, 14 x 10.75 inches, 1903

From a unique portfolio by the great Photo-Secessionist photographer and teacher, containing six images illustrating the short story "Beneath the Wrinkle." Three of the images were published along with Clara Morris's story in the February 1904 issue of McClure's. This distinctive title page design by White, depicting the story's prologue, was not included in McClure's, and remained unpublished until 1980. Another image from the portfolio was published along with the story and also appeared in Alfred Stieglitz's famed magazine, Camera Work.

The portfolio was produced at the time when White was leaving Newark, Ohio to become a full-time photographer and teacher in New York, and thus represents an important commission in his career.

In this image, the narrator is shown holding an old, faded ribbon. In the story, the narrator notices a brilliant streak of color hidden inside a wrinkle in the fabric... reminding her of an episode that began half a century before.


Reference: Wm. B. Becker, "Rediscovery: Poetic Photo Illustrations by Clarence H. White," Camera 35, vol. 25, no.1, January1980.

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