Research Seminar: History of Photography

An Axis Between Old and New: Exhibiting Photography at the National Gallery

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

17.30, Research Forum South Room

Louis Jean Baptiste Igout, Académie No. E791, 1870sLouis Jean Baptiste Igout, Académie No. E791, 1870s. Albumen print, 14.2 x 9.8 cm. Wilson Centre for Photography © National Gallery
Photography is an art form of modern times, but it also arises from artistic traditions that long predate its advent. The new National Gallery exhibition, Seduced by Art: Photography Past and Present, is a three-way project which argues that historical art was an engine for early photographic invention, and that both those precedents inspire today’s photography.

This exhibition takes a different tack to surveys of well-known relationships between fine art and photography. This is not a review of photography’s many ruptures with the past, nor does it inventory the coincidences with contemporaneous art, whether Pre-Raphaelite, impressionist, or surrealist. Photography’s debt to historical art is more than imitation or homage; historicism validates new art in the conventional terms of the old. Seduced by Art aims to develop an artistic dialogue between past and present, and this seminar will address that axis with an introduction to the exhibition.

Speaker(s): Dr. Hope Kingsley (Co-Curator, Seduced by Art: Photography Past and Present and Curator, Education and Collections, Wilson Centre for Photography)

Ticket/entry details: Open to all, free admission. Places will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis. Advance booking is not available.

Organised by: Dr Julian Stallabrass and Sara Knelman

The History of Photography research seminar series aims to be a discursive platform for the discussion and dissemination of current research on photography.  From art as photography and early photographic technology to ethnographic photographs and contemporary photography as art, the seminar welcomes contributions from researchers across the board, whether independent or affiliated with museums, galleries, archives, libraries or higher education, and endeavours to provide scholars with a challenging opportunity to present work in progress and test out new ideas.

The seminars usually take place once a term, on Wednesday evenings at 5.30pm in the Research Forum. The papers, and formal discussion, are followed by informal discussion and refreshments.

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