Gaspard-Félix Tournachon, known the world as Nadar, was a French aeronaut, caricaturist and photographer, who was born in Paris in 1910.
From 1850 he commenced a series of photographic portraits of prominent contemporary personalities, among them Charles Baudelaire, Victor Hugo, Sarah Bernhardt, George Sand, Guy de Maupassant, Edouard Manet, Ernest Shackleton and Georges Clemenceau. And around 1865 he created his startling and innovative Revolving Self-Portait.
He experimented in the creation of artificial light by means of the burning of powder of magnesium, and in 1861 used the technique to produce photographic images deep below ground in the Paris catacombs. The long exposure of 20 minutes necessitated the use of dummies rather than living people.
|Catastrophe near Hanover of le Géant in 1863|
In the aftermath of the defeat, he returned once more to photography, and had one last triumph at the Exposition Universelle de Paris, a retrospective of his work organised by his son. He died in Paris on 21 March 1910.