Sunlight pierces an ornamental wood screen and casts shadows and highlights on the interior of an Egyptian cafe located in Cairo. A customer at left or perhaps an employee holds the end of a long-stemmed hookah water pipe (narghile) while another patron looks on from the back of the frame. This intriguing composition was taken by English photographer Ernest R. Ashton, (c. 1867- 1951-2) who recorded similar scenes in the Middle East and India. A member of the esteemed British Linked Ring Brotherhood, his pseudonym with the group was the "Orientalist" because of the locations he preferred for photography.
This vintage hand-pulled photogravure was printed in sepia ink for the April, 1901 issue of Camera Notes. (vol. 4 no. 4) At the time, this groundbreaking journal of photography was the organ of The New York Camera Club and A Cairene Café appeared within its' pages while Alfred Stieglitz still edited it.
Marginal losses to left side of plate where it had been removed from journal. Original tissue guard printed in red ink giving credit to photographer and title of work still glued along left plate margin. Please inspect both photographs with listing. (please email if you require additional photos)
image: 18.8 x 14.6 cm
support: 27.9 x 19.7 cm
Please follow this link for additional work by Ernest R. Ashton in the PhotoSeed Archive.