The Nadars, a photographic legend

The Nadars


Gustave Doré with a checkered scarf

Félix Nadar, between 1856 and 1858

Salt-paper print from a collodion glass negative, 23.3 x 18.7 cm.
BnF, Prints and Photographs Department, EO-15 (7)-FOL
© Bibliothèque nationale de France
Gustave Doré got his start from Charles Philipon in Le Journal pour rire, in 1848. Nadar immediately recognized the talent of the 16-year-old, who was still dividing his time between high school and caricature. Nadar introduced him in his Lanterne Magique in theApril 23, 1852 issue of the Journal pour rire, along with the publication's other illustrators: "The owl-faced youngster is Gustave Doré," he wrote, while showering him with praise, and concluding: "How could caricature fade away in France with children like that?" Gustave Doré found in Nadar a champion of his painting... which generally appealed more to the English than the French.
Portraits of Doré by Adrien Tournachon and Félix Nadar are many: the first dates to 1853, the last shows him on his deathbed.