CLASSIC DAG ART! What ran through the operator’s mind when he was horrified to see two large mercury spots on the developed sixth plate that has a new archival seal? His client had been in a hurry and left the premises before his likeness had been completed, telling the man that he would return the next day to retrieve the piece. All’s well that ended well, obviously, because this masterful use of creative pigments and a palette of colors survived! The daguerreotypist or someone with a genius for inventive art who was associated with his operations drew flowers inside those chemical circles. But rather than stop, the artist continued by producing a wonderful vase and spindly stalk complete with decorative green leaves. The visual results afterwards, considering that the young fellow simply wanted a loosely composed seated straightforward image, must have astounded one and all. What he received was a combination of daguerreian portraiture and very inventive drawing, making his composition a true piece of Americana produced on a silvered mirror! A previous owner labeled the exquisite likeness, which has holographic properties, “The Enigma!” I certainly concur since I have never see such a high quality effort used to “save” a single daguerreian effort! I wonder what the young man did for a living? His hair seems to have been sheered just prior to arriving at the studio. He obviously wore a wide-brimmed hat much of the time that protected his forehead and eyes from the elements. Really folks, look at the lower portion of his freckled face. It was deeply tanned to say the least. Light entered the small room from a large window on the right. Either a smaller window or piece of white cloth was on the opposite side to diminish shadows. There are several green specks in the white backdrop. Also a few mold mites. The oxidation stays mostly near the edges of the brass mat although a few brown dots are also present. A nice complete leather case with a wonderful decorative red pad inside completes this magnificent presentation.
The Enigma! Sixth Plate Dag