Common Milkweed

Accession Number

Common Milkweed

Jeannette Klute

Object Creation Date
1950 - 1954

Medium & Support
dye transfer print on paper

12 1/4 in x 9 1/2 in (31.12 cm x 24.13 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. James Agah, Class of 1989 (BBA)

Subject matter
This color photograph of common milkweed is an original dye transfer print by the artist. Klute was a pioneer of color photography and helped develop the Eastman Kodak Dye Transfer process. She left detailed notes on the conditions under which each photograph in the portfolio was taken. This particular image was taken on October 22 with a Graflex Series D (4 x 5) on Kodachrome film.

This image was one of 50 reproductions included in the 1954 publication of the portfolio Woodland Portraits (Plate 47). These photographs were taken over a three to four year period in Rockport and Cape Ann, Massachusetts, and Bristol, New York. The series was taken without any manipulation and minimal environmental impact, with natural light and depth of field being the primary subjects of the portfolio. Klute draws attention to often overlooked subjects, focusing in on a single plant or animal and abstracting its surroundings.

Physical Description
This is a color photograph of a common milkweed plant after it has gone to seed. Its seeds and floss form a halo around the pod. The shallow depth of field creates a sharp focus on the plant, with a field of subdued autumnal colors in the background.

Primary Object Classification

Collection Area

If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
available light photography
flora (plants)
milkweed floss
nature photography
woodlands (plant communities)

& Author Notes

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