Hours: Tues - Sat 11–5:30 pm & by appointment
First Thursdays of the month open until 7:30pm
Contact: 415-781-1122 • email@example.com
49 Geary Street • Suite 410 • San Francisco, CA 94108
View photographs from our inventory by clicking on these galleries:
Our Current Exhibition:
Collectors' Favorites from Five Gallery Artists
June 6 - August 24, 2013
Robert Tat Gallery presents a group exhibition featuring collectors’ favorite photographs by five of the Gallery’s artists:
Please click on the links above to view works by each artist.
ALYSON BELCHER is a San Francisco artists and teacher. She describes her pinhole self-portraits as "an exploration of the nature of each movement and where it originates internally". The long exposures required in pinhole photography allow the subject time to fully experience each moment and explore the space through slow movement, and enables something to arise that might never be revealed by modern photographic technology. Pinhole cameras have no lens to interfere with the light as it travels from the subject to the film, thus creating a direct process of image-making.
WILLIAM R. HEICK was a San Francisco Bay Area photographer who studied with Minor White and Ansel Adams at the California School of Fine Arts (now the San Francisco Art Institute). He has been associated with many of the great California photographers of the 20th century, including Edward Weston and Dorothea Lange and Imogen Cunningham, lifelong friends both of whom he regards as primary influences on his photographic work. Sadly, he passed away last year at the age of 96.
In a published "Art Scene" review Monterey art critic Rick Deregon wrote: "The special qualities of W.R. Heicks's images come from the simple relationship between the photographer and subject. With no agenda other than to capture the decisive inspirational moment and to illustrate the human parade Mr. Heick's work transcends straight journalism and aspires to an art of nobility and compassion."
REBECCA MARTINEZ as a background in painting and graphic design, which is evident in much of her work. Although she photographs many subjects, the majority of her oeuvre explores and examines artificial worlds and the entities that represent us.
Rebecca writes of her Wounded series, which features damaged, antique mannequins: “Everything in the physical world, both animate and inanimate, is challenged and effected by time. The quest for perfection is a continual battle against the forces of aging and injury, and maintenance of beauty requires increasing artifice. These generic beauty icons are empty vessels, and achieve individuality and their own unique character only after they become marked by usage and decay. This damage is a reminder of our own mortality. Just as the humans they represent, these inanimate objects do not escape the ravages of time. Damage of these facsimiles of ourselves is a memento of the transitory nature of perceived physical perfection and a reflection of the human experience.”
MARGARETTA K. MITCHELL is a nationally-known artist and professional photographer, author, and educator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Of her work she writes: “The role of art is to awaken the senses, to find an inner truth by connecting with others across the centuries and with the natural world. As artists we become part of the continuum of those who seek to express the simple joy of being alive. By observation of, say, a flower, or a naked body, or the head of a small child, we make a connection that teaches us about the meaning of life, of love, of the highest part of our psyches. Most people see only the outer form, but the meditation on that form through a discipline such as photography reveals messages from another realm. My work is essentially a meditation on that connection.”
GERALD RATTO studied with Minor White and Ansel Adams at the California School of Fine Arts (now the San Francisco Art Institute), where visiting teachers included Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham and Edward Weston. Even before he received his degree, Ratto exhibited alongside his teachers in a juried San Francisco Museum of Art show, “Perceptions.”
Ratto comments on his Children of the Fillmore series, made in the early 1950s: “The people were wonderful. People didn't have attitudes then. [They] believed me when I said my only motive was to take pictures. That's why the pictures are so good. People were just themselves, and we were having a good time together.”
When Black & White Magazine honored Ratto’s Children of the Fillmore portfolio with a Spotlight Award and article in 2008, they observed: “With a career of more than five decades as a commercial and fine art photographer, Gerald Ratto could rightly be called one of the true legends of the San Francisco Bay-Area photography scene.”
ROBERT TAT GALLERY sells photographic images of all types. Our inventory includes:
- Vintage and later photographs of the master photographers, from the 19th
to the 21st centuries;
- Camera Work gravures and Pictorialist works from the early 20th century;
- Modernist abstract works;
- Lesser-known mid-century artists;
- Vernacular and Found Images by unknown photographers;
- Contemporary works;
- Male imagery, including classic physique photographs and affectionate
- San Francisco historical material.
has a special interest in 20th century European and American Modernism.
This includes classic modernism (photographs made between the two World
Wars), and extends to a broader range of work influenced by the modernist
school. It also encompasses 19th century photographs that anticipate modernism,
vernacular and other anonymous works with a modernist sensibility, and
ROBERT TAT GALLERY is located in San Francisco's premiere gallery building at 49 Geary Street, Suite 410, near Union Square. The Gallery is open Tuesday - Saturday 11:00 AM - 5:30 PM. For further information, please call 415-781-1122. We also frequently exhibit at art fairs.
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on this site, please send us an email with your name, phone (optional)
and photo interests.
We are always
looking for fine photographs to purchase or consign. If you have photographs
you would like to sell, please contact us.
If you are
looking for a particular photographic image, works by a specific photographer
or a certain style of photograph, please contact us with your request.
If we don't have it in inventory we'll be pleased to search for you. We
have resources for photographic material all over the world.
is a Salon photograph?
Numerous camera clubs around the world sponsor regular exhibitions, called
salons, where members of other clubs compete to show work. The salons
during the first half of the 20th century were particularly rich, featuring
the work of many artists who later became famous. We take a special interest
in the the works of lesser known salon photographers, often serious amateurs
or commercial professionals doing their own work on the side. Their photographs
are frequently beautifully composed and crafted, with an aesthetic and
print quality rivaling that of the celebrated artists of the day. Many
collectors appreciate salon work for these reasons -- and because it is
more reasonably priced than works by better known artists. Salon prints
may bear exhibition labels or stamps on the reverse of the photograph's
mount, indicating awards or other participation in various salons.
is a Vernacular photograph?
The term "vernacular" literally means "of the commonplace."
In photography collecting, it refers to photographs which were made without
artistic intent. This includes commercial photographs, personal snapshots
and albums, historical images, scientific photographs, etc. Many collectors
find vernacular images interesting, both for subject matter and for the
occasional image that has an aesthetic appeal, albeit unintentional.
is a Found Image?
Our Found Images are specially selected snapshots screened with the same
criteria as a fine art photograph: artistic appeal, engaging or emotional
subject matter, and print quality. We search through about 1000 pieces
to find one "gem in the rough" that meets our standards. There
is growing interest in collecting snapshots and a new appreciation of
them as art, with several fine arts museums mounting exhibitions during
the past few years. Found Images from Robert Tat's collection were exhibited
at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1998 as part of their "Snapshots:
The Photography of Everyday Life" show.