British photographic history

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A friend from Sunderland has given me an album of thirty cartes de visite assembled in 1888.  The  eleven photographers whose work is represented were located in small towns throughout County Durham. The majority were in Sunderland, probably because this was the county's largest town and a major sea port.  One picture stands out from the rest in that the pose is more natural, with the subject seemingly unaware of being photographed, in contrast to the hard stares of most of the others in the album. This picture was taken by Madame Brunner, presumably Clementina Brunner nee Grant, 1833 - 1887.  On the back she describes herself as a "Pupil of Mayall Photographer to the Queen" .  Her address, 32 Fawcett Street, places her in the centre of the town's most important commercial street.   She was clearly not only a pioneering lady photographer but also one who had a very distinct style and a confident approach to the business aspect of her work.

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Comment by Andrew Eskind on March 27, 2023 at 20:14

Madame Brunner is among 70 or so photographers exhibited in

Eleventh Annual Exhibition of the Photographic Society of London, May 1865.   Perhaps elsewhere - be interested if you know others.

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