British photographic history

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Online symposium: Wedgwood 250 / 14 and 15 May 2021

To mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of Tom Wedgwood on 14 May 1771, the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry and the Royal Photographic Society have organised a virtual meeting on the afternoons of 14 and 15 May 2021, starting at 2pm BST (3pm CEST, 9am EDT). 

Tom Wedgwood, fifth child of the midlands potter Josiah Wedgwood, is now best remembered for his 1802 paper in which he outlined a chemical method of creating an image. By the middle of the nineteenth century this had become widely recognised as major precursor to the development of photography in the 1830s. But Wedgwood’s short life (he died aged 34 in 1805) encompassed much more. A member of the loosely defined radical romantic movement, he associated with such major figures at William Godwin, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Thomas Beddoes, Humphry Davy and many others.  

The speakers who will discuss these and other aspects of his life and work, as well as his enduring legacy as a founder of photography, are the current Tom Wedgwood, Geoffrey Batchen (keynote), Lucy Lead, Michael Gray, Brian Dolan, Tim Fulford, Catrin Jones, Michael Pritchard and Rose Teanby. 

The full programme and registration details can be found at https://rps.org/wedgwood250 

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