One of most important Czech photographers of the early 20th century was Rudolf Bruner-Dvořák (1864 – 1921), famous mainly as a pioneer of reportage photography. His work, including Autochromes, is noted for a richness of subjects and technical perfection. As well as for his own use, he used Autochromes to reproduce paintings by his brother, František Bruner-Dvořák.
From the Autochrome work of Bruner-Dvořák, sadly only a few boxes of Autochromes have survived. There is a series of pictures of Autumn in the Park, probably at Konopiste castle, owned by Ferdinand de Este, and in Stromovka park, Prague. There is also one still life, and a number of reproductions of paintings by his brother. Very rare however is his three-color carbro print of the Czech crown. All of these pictures demonstrate how skilled Bruner-Dvořák was in photographing in color.
“Fascination of Autumn”. Autumn colors were a very common theme for Autochrome pictures. These photographs by Prague photographer Bruner- Dvořák are however some of the most beautiful of their kind.
His photographic experience can be seen here in the composition, his choice of long format, and the way he has worked with light. These pictures are also interesting in their degree of contrast, which gives them even more vibrant colors than usual. Very unusual for an Autochrome is the depth of focus.
These photographs were probably taken at Konopište castle.
This still life, of paintings by brother of Bruner-Dvořák, is a good example of the photographer’s attempts to put as many colors as possible into a single picture. It suggests that this may be a relatively early experiment with color by this author.