British photographic history

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Louis Adolphe Humbert de Molard (1800-1874)

A special exhibition dedicated to the photographic techniques used in the age of Louis Daguerre has been organised by the museums of Bry-sur-Marne and Lagny-sur-Marne. One of the highlights of the exhibit will be the display of part of a collection of about 50 prints by Louis Adolphe Humbert de Molard, never shown before to the general public.

From a rich Parisian family, Baron Louis Adolphe Humbert de Molard was one of those wealthy amateurs who brought their talent and passion to early photography. He took up photography in 1843 using, as here, the daguerreotype. Later, in the mid 1850s, he became one of the first French photographers to use the calotype, a technique on paper developed in England by Fox Talbot, and introducing the principle of positive and negative.
His images were sometimes taken spontaneously, but more often they were composed like genuine genre scenes. This choice can be explained in part by the long exposure time, but equally by the heritage of the pictorial tradition

A conference will also be organised at the same time, including the publication of a catalogue. Details of the exhibition can be found here and here.


Photo: Louis Dodier as a prisoner 1847 Daguerreotype
H. 11.5; W. 15.5 cm © RMN (Musée d'Orsay) / Hervé Lewandowski

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