From 1897 until his death in 1927, Atget was photographer of Paris par excellence. Atget's Paris is a strange, largely unpopulated world where objects project an uncanny density: shoes dangling in a shop window, or the milk cart laden with cans and equipped with whip and reins but no driver. In typical Atget style, those humans that do appear are the humble tradespeople, the ragpickers, the prostitutes. Although hailed by the surrealists for the poetic quality of his images, Atget refused to accept that he was an artist, claiming that the pictures he took were simply documents. He has become known as the first modern photographer and had the unique ability to inject a tragic quality into ordinary things.