Yesterday I presented ‘A (Partial) History of Photography’ to the Forum. It was partial in both senses: it covered only a small part of the history; and it reflected my tastes and choices. I tried to blend the history of issues, subjects, photographers and technology in a more or less chronological narrative. I avoided using ‘first’ photographs of a genre and those that are so well-known as to be regarded almost as clichés.
Twenty-one slides covered: 1. First Photos; 2. War Photography; 3. The Urge to Travel; 4. Portraiture; 5. Searching for the Invisible; 6. ‘You press the button, we do the rest’; 7. Photography as Art; 8. Campaigning Photography; 9. The Birth of Modernism; 10. Straight Photography; 11. The Avant-garde; 12. Photojournalism; 13. The New Deal – FSA; 14. Magnum; 15. The Decisive Moment; 16. Conceptual Photography; 17. New Documents; 18. Photo Books. 19. Colour; 20. Digital; and 21. Artist-Photographer? See my presentation at www.zimbushboy.org/photo-forum-2018-19
Comments from members reflected the partial nature of the talk. Things I didn’t cover included: Polaroid; cartes-de-visite; stereoscopic views; space, aerial and medical photography; and early colour photography, Autochrome and FSA colour work. And I should have started with the camera obscura. Next time.
Photos: 1. Samuel Bourne, Fatehpur Sikri, India, c. 1866; 2. Man Ray, Untitled Rayograph, 1922; 3 Lee Friedlander, New York City, 1963