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Pictorialist Photographs of California Missions by Louis Fleckenstein
photCL 411  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
This disbound album contains early 20th century pictorial photographs of California mission ruins taken by Louis Fleckenstein; most notable are San Juan Capistrano, San Juan Bautista, San Luis Obispo, and San Fernando Rey. Also included are photographs of smaller missions and Catholic churches, such as San Antonio de Pala Asistencia, Church of Our Lady the Queen of the Angels, and the Royal Presidio Chapel.
Background
Louis Fleckenstein was born in 1866 in Faribault, Minnesota and began a career as a painter. He began to delve into photography when his wife gave him a camera in 1895. Over time, Fleckenstein became involved in pictorial photography, focusing on the beauty of subject matter over reality. He founded the Salon Club of America in 1903, and was appointed Director. In 1907, Fleckenstein moved to Los Angeles and opened a portrait studio there. Seven years later, he founded the Camera Pictorialists of Los Angeles. Around 1920, he photographed the California missions, seeing them as good subjects in their ruined state for atmospheric prints; his photographs helped fuel the public’s interest in the missions’ romantic image. Fleckenstein moved to Long Beach in 1924, where he continued to work with pictorial photography until his death in 1943.
Extent
33 photographs in 1 box; photographs 13 x 10 cm. (5 x 4 in.).
Restrictions
All requests for permission to publish photographs must be submitted in writing to the Curator of Photographs. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Huntington as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.
Availability
Access is granted to qualified researchers and by appointment. Please contact the Curator of Photographs at the Huntington Library.