British photographic history

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Irving Penn Foundation funds landmark Platinotype treatise

It is announced that The Irving Penn Foundation is providing a generous grant toward the production of the book, Platinum and Palladium Photographs: Technical and Aesthetic History, Connoisseurship, and Preservation.

This publication represents the extended proceedings of the International Symposium on this subject, held at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, last October, and reported on BPH here

The book will be published by The American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works Photographic Materials Group (AIC/PMG), Washington, DC.  The book project coordinator and chief editor will be Constance McCabe, Head of Photograph  Conservation, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. The probable date of publication is Summer 2016.

As readers will know, Irving Penn played a critical role in the modern history of the art of platinum photography, passionately exploring the medium in his quest for the perfect and permanent platinum print, which led to a revitalization of this exquisite photographic process. What some readers may not know is that the origin of this present collaborative study of platinum and palladium photographs, which finally involved about 40 researchers across some 20 institutions, can be traced to the preparations for the National Gallery of Art’s 2005 exhibition and publication, Irving Penn: Platinum Prints, during which many questions were raised regarding the highly technical nature of Penn’s photographs and platinum prints in general.  Now, ten years later, new scientific research has made great advances toward a meaningful understanding of the chemical, technical, and aesthetic nature of these complex photographs.

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Comment by Larry McNeil, Photographer on June 5, 2015 at 6:29

Greetings and thank you for accepting me into this site. As a photographer and photographic scholar it's good to see all of the information shared here. Can you do me a favor and add a Photographer's credit and title for the photograph shared here? The tittle is "Elders" and is a platinum photograph made in 1992 from "The Feather Series." Please add "Photograph Copyright Larry McNeil, 1992."  There is also a very informative group of websites dedicated to this platinum photography:
Thank you very much.

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