EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904)

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 637 (MAN RIDING JUMPING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 637 (MAN RIDING JUMPING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 634 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 634 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 631 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 631 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 628 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 628 (MAN RIDING GALLOPING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 616 (MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 616 (MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 596 (HORSE CANTERING), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 596 (HORSE CANTERING), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 595 (HORSE PULLING GIG WITH RIDER), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 595 (HORSE PULLING GIG WITH RIDER), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 593 (MAN RIDING CANTERING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 593 (MAN RIDING CANTERING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 590 (NUDE MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 590 (NUDE MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 582 (NUDE MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 582 (NUDE MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 579 (MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 579 (MAN RIDING HORSE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 570 (HORSE WALKING), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 570 (HORSE WALKING), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 11 (NUDE MAN STRIDING), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 11 (NUDE MAN STRIDING), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 156 (WOMAN LEAPING OVER STOOL), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 156 (WOMAN LEAPING OVER STOOL), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 92 (NUDE WOMAN ASCENDING STAIRCASE), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 92 (NUDE WOMAN ASCENDING STAIRCASE), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 408 (NUDE WOMAN THROWING BUCKET OF WATER ONTO NUDE WOMAN), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 408 (NUDE WOMAN THROWING BUCKET OF WATER ONTO NUDE WOMAN), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 232 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN LIFTING HER SKIRT), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 232 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN LIFTING HER SKIRT), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 214 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN LIFTING CHILD), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 214 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN LIFTING CHILD), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 295 (WOMAN PICKING UP BALL FROM THE GROUND WITH TENNIS RACKET), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 295 (WOMAN PICKING UP BALL FROM THE GROUND WITH TENNIS RACKET), 1887

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ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 175 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN SKIPPING OVER STONES), 1887 by EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE (1830-1904) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

ANIMAL LOCOMOTION: PLATE 175 (SEMI-NUDE WOMAN SKIPPING OVER STONES), 1887

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Born Edward James Muggeridge in Kingston upon Thames in 1830, Eadweard Muybridge's life spanned travel to multiple continents, numerous name changes and one scandalous murder trial. He was one of the great photographic thinkers and technical pioneers of all time, whose mind reached beyond still photography and anticipated the rise of the moving picture.

Muybridge emigrated to the United States as a young man and during his first decade in America he worked as a bookseller in both New York and San Francisco under the name of E. J. Muygridge, trading in photographs and engravings as well as publications. After sustaining serious head injuries in a stagecoach crash in Texas he returned to the UK for a five-year period where it is thought he took up photography. Upon his return to America, he reinvented himself as "Muybridge", and quickly established a successful career as a landscape photographer, producing dramatic views of both Yosemite and San Francisco. His reputation as being an adventurous and progressive photographer led him to work as both a war and official government photographer, at this time he also referred to himself as "Helios" - the Greek god of the sun.

Then in 1872, racehorse owner and former Governor of California, Leland Standford, hired Muybridge to photograph his horse galloping in order to discover whether all four of the animal's hooves were lifted off the ground at the same time, which was a popular debate at the time. In order to photograph the horse at speed, Muybridge engineered a system of multiple cameras with trip wire shutter releases to capture each stage of the movement. The project took Muybridge five years, which proved to be a turbulent period in the artist's life. In 1874 he shot his young wife's lover, when he discovered that the young drama critic might have fathered her baby. Muybridge went to trial but was subsequently acquitted of the crime as a "justifiable homicide". After the trial, Muybridge set out on an expedition to Central America, where he took photographs and travelled for over a year, once more changing his name to Eduardo Santiago Muybridge. His wife died nine months after the trial, while Muybridge was still abroad. Her son, Florado Helios Muybridge, grew up in an orphanage.

After his travels, Muybridge returned to work for Standford at his Palo Alto racetrack. In the June of 1878, Muybridge's photographs proved conclusively, for the very first time, that a galloping horse lifts all four hooves off the ground. The effects of Muybridge's discovery were seismic. Newspapers, although not able to reproduce photographs, depicted the images as woodcuts, and Scientific American published drawings of the photographs. Artists, including Edgar Degas and Thomas Eakins began to reference the photographs in order to make their paintings closer to life. Muybridge toured Europe with his photographs, where his astonished audiences included William Gladstone, Alfred Lord Tennyson and the Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII. However, when Leyland published "The Horse in Motion", Muybridge's role in the project was barely mentioned, and the relationship between the two immediately disintegrated.

Muybridge quickly found another sponsor for his next body of work in the University of Pennsylvania. "Animal Locomotion" (1884 1887) was to become Muybridge's most influential and enduring body of work. Funded entirely by the University of Pennsylvania, the project became a wide-ranging systematic study of movement, breaking new ground in terms of both science and the emerging art form of photography. Each plate in the series shows the same subject in sequential phases of one movement. Muybridge recorded varied forms of movement in a wide range of animals (mostly taken at Philadelphia zoo), from pigeons in flight to the subtleties of gait found in sloths, kangaroos and capybaras. Muybridge also documented human subjects engaged in walking, running, descending staircases as well as engaging in activities such as boxing, fencing, weight lifting and wrestling.

During his time at Pennsylvania, Muybridge greatly improved on the previous technical capabilities of his equipment, developing a clockwork motor to fire the camera shutters in sequence. This meant he could document rapid or subtle motion without having to depend on the subject's movements to trigger a shutter. Muybridge extended his original set of cameras from 12 to 24, and set up an extra two separate batteries of cameras to capture rear and angled views. Muybridge took over 20,000 photographs in the three years he spent working on the project, ruthlessly editing the final selection down to 781 plates.

The photographs fundamentally changed understandings of movement Muybridge's work from this period has contributed to the science of physiology and biomechanics. The imagery of Animal Locomotion had a profound impact on a huge range of subsequent artists, including Marcel Duchamp, Francis Bacon, Jasper Johns and Cy Twombly.

Muybridge also invented the first machine to project moving photographic images. His device the "zoopraxiscope", could be used to animate entire sequences of photographs, anticipating the rise of cinema. He returned to Britain in 1894 as a hugely celebrated figure, lecturing extensively throughout the country. He died in Kingston upon Thames in 1904.

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