Cloudy Sky—The Mediterranean with Mount Agde


Gustave Le Gray (French, 1820–1882)


Sheet: 31.1 x 39.7 cm (12 1/4 x 15 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Photograph, albumen print from two wet collodion-on-glass negatives

Not On View


Europe, Photography



Gustave Le Gray advanced the painterly aspects of early photography. A pioneer of photographic techniques and a sought-after teacher throughout his career, he is best known for the majestic ocean views that he made between 1856 and 1858. Printed on a scale that was large for its time, images such as this view of Mount Agde, taken along France’s Mediterranean coast, have a visual power that brought Le Gray international praise. The project forced him to deal with the varying tonal intensities of the clouds and sea, which were difficult to record with the available technology. He skillfully circumvented the problem by using two negatives, which he unobtrusively joined at the horizon line during printing.


Not signed. Verso, in dark brown ink, l. r.: 8513.


André Jammes; Lucien Goldschmidt, New York, 1971; Charles W. Millard III, Chapel Hill, NC; gift of Millard to MFA November 1997.

Credit Line

Gift of Charles W. Millard III in honor of Clifford S. Ackley