I confess my ignorance: I was not aware of E.O. Hoppé’s work as a photographer before admiring the atmospheric images he published in 1926 in a book entitled Picturesque Great Britain in the Sainsbury Centre’s exhibition on W.G. Sebald. Sebald would have known of him because, like Sebald himself, Hoppé was German. He arrived in London in 1900 to work for Deutsche Bank, was given a camera as a birthday present in 1903, married the sister of a friend, and left Deutsche Bank to set up a photographic studio in Baron’s Court in 1907. Incredibly well known in the 1920s as a fashionable portrait photographer, close friend of George Bernard Shaw, he moved to topographical work in the late 1920s, and subsequently sold his photographic archive to the Mansell Collection in 1954 where it was categorised by subject, not the name of the photographer, so his name disappeared nearly entirely from public view. It’s a very Sebaldian life story – loss, fame, talent, exile.
I hope I am not transgressing copyright by reproducing this picture of him:-