Wednesday, 10 October 2007

The Genius of Photography

I was looking around my local Borders and came across a book called 'The Genius of Photography' which has just been published to go alongside the BBC show of the same name. The book actually looked quite interesting and worth a read.

Touted as ‘the first comprehensive television history of the most influential art form of the present day. This landmark series for BBC2 and BBC4 will explore the key events and images that have marked the development of photography. At the heart of the series will be a quest to understand what makes a truly great photograph.’

The series begins in a palazzo on the Grand Canal, Venice. Using bin-liners and masking tape, photographer Abe Morell turns a room into a camera. He cuts a small hole to let a tight beam of light into the blacked-out room and, with it, the outside world comes pouring in – upside down and twice as natural, thereby demonstrating one half of the simple but profound physical principles on which photography is based.

The other half – the problem of "fixing the shadows" – took longer to solve but, when that was done by two rival methods announced in 1839 by Henry Fox Talbot and Louis Daguerre, photography was born.

The series is six 1 hour shows, the first episode called ‘Fixing the Shadows’ tells the story of the inventions of photography and the way in which it became an integral part of the modern world. It describes the remarkable achievements of the pioneer photographers, the revolution that took place when George Eastman made photography available to the masses with the invention of the Kodak brand and the story of Jacques-Henri Lartigue, the child photographer and ultimate amateur.

For those of us in the U.K this is listed as airing on Thurs 24th Oct as 9-10pm, BBC4.

For a video clip check this link

1 comment:

Janet Penny said...

That's brilliant news. I'm running a pinhole workshop for 6th formers in November, where we will begin by turning their classroom into a camera obscura. This program will make the perfect backup plan if the day is too dull.