Man Ray was born Emmanuel Radnitzky on August 27, 1890, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. He was the only American to play a significant part in the Dada and Surrealist movements. His father was a tailor, his mother a seamstress, and he was the son of Jewish immigrants. Before he reached maturity, Emmanuel knew he wanted to be an artist. He went to the Ferrer Center school, a contemporary institution with politically and socially liberal views at the time. He met poets, painters, and his future wife there. Radnitzky studied architecture, engineering, and art before settling in New York City as a painter. In 1911, he adopted the pen name, Man Ray.
From 1910 through 1911, he visited Alfred Stieglitz's gallery 291 in New York. Man Ray photography and Man Ray art found a home there in the future. The gallery was well-known for presenting artists who bridged the gap between European and American art. Emmanuel Radnitzky returned to the School of Visual Arts in New York, determined to make his imprint on the art world. His tutors, disturbed in the presence of his works, encouraged him to give up since he would never become a brilliant artist. Furious, he stormed out and began to paint anything and everything. He painted his visions, thoughts, and inner feelings. With this disillusionment, the young New York artist's art blossomed.
The Armory Show (otherwise known as the International Exhibition of Modern Art) also inspired Ray in 1913, which included works by famous artists such as Pablo Picasso. He then relocated to Ridgefield, New Jersey, a flourishing art colony in the same year. His work was growing as well. He turned toward abstraction after dabbling with Cubist painting styles. Man Ray, like Duchamp, began to create ready-made, commercially manufactured things that he labeled as works of art. The Gift (1921), a flatiron with a row of tacks affixed to the bottom, is one of his most well-known ready-mades. Man Ray arrived in Paris in 1921 and became involved with the Parisian Dada and Surrealist societies of artists and writers. He experimented with several mediums, inspired by the liberty espoused by these organizations.
"Holy Trinity" - Fine Art Photography Prints by Jongas, Limited Edition of 200
Ray, along with Duchamp and Francis Picabia, was a key player in New York's Dada movement. Dadaism, named after the French term for a rocking horse, questioned preconceived concepts of art and literature and promoted improvisation. Ray came to Paris in 1921. There, he remained a member of the creative avant-garde, rubbing shoulders with luminaries such as Gertrude Stein and Ernest Hemingway.
Man Ray art welcomed the respect of intellectual contemporaries. Man Ray photography also found its place in history – in publications such as Vogue.
These business ventures aided his fine art endeavors. Ray, a photography pioneer, accidentally found a new approach to generating fascinating photos in his darkroom. These photographs, known as "Rayographs," were created by putting and moving items on photosensitive paper. Man Ray worked across mediums and historical trends and was an early contributor to The Museum of Modern Art's exhibition program. Ray's other well-known piece from this period was 1924's "Violin d'Ingres". This altered image depicts his sweetheart, a singer named Kiki, with her naked back, modeled like a work by French neoclassical artist Jean August Dominique Ingres. Ray applied two black outlines of f-holes to her back to make it appear like a musical instrument in a hilarious twist. He also investigated the aesthetic potential of cinema, producing now-classic Surrealistic works such as L'Etoile de Mer (1928).
"Twisted Times" Tree Photography Prints by Jongas, Limited Edition of 200
Ray ended up experimenting with a surrealist art technique known as the Sabatier Effect, otherwise also known as "Solarization", it adds a sense of fantasy and an almost ghost effect. His pictures, paintings, sketches, sculptures, films, and even a chess set were included in three early seminal exhibitions: Cubism and Abstract Art (1936); Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism (1936-37), which included one of his "rayographs" as the catalog cover image; and Photography, 1839-1937. In 1941, the Museum received a significant donation from James Thrall Soby, an author, collector, and critic who bought an extensive series of Man Ray's most important pictures straight from the artist eight years ago.
The recent event in the history of arts took place in May of 2022, at the auction house of Christie's. When Man Ray's photograph named "Le Violon d'Ingres" was sold for $12.4 Million. This sale has pushed Man Ray to hold the current title of most expensive photograph sold. Pushing out the work of Andreas Gurski - "Rheine II" that sold at Christie's auction for a previous record of $4.3 Million dollars.
"Psychedelic" Abstract Tree Photography Art by Jongas, Limited Edition of 200