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DMU secures £500,000 grant from JPICH

12201078658?profile=originalDr Gil Pasternak of De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) has secured a grant of over £500,000 for a project DigiCONFLICT exploring the role of digital media in defining cultural heritage. Pasternak, Senior Research Fellow in Photographic History, will lead the research consortium consisting of a team of researchers from DMU, the Institute of Art of the Polish Academy of Sciences and Linköping University in Sweden.

The grant was awarded by the Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage (JPICH), which is part of the European Commission, and fits with the European Union’s Year of Cultural Heritage taking place during 2018.

The project will run between 2018 and 2021 to explore how national and ethnic communities around the world have used digital heritage to define and preserve their cultural assets and sense of morality.

With their research mainly considering case studies from Sweden, Israel and Poland, the three partner institutions will focus on oral history, multimedia museums and photography as the most commonly used media employed in digital heritage.

12200977088?profile=originalThey will also commission other scholars, curators, archivists, digitisation officers and librarians from around the world to write related essays to give the project a bigger spread of data. “We will be looking into the realities that have been established around digitisation and digitalisation practices,” Dr Pasternak explained. “Digital heritage has largely become a lynchpin of educational and ideological efforts. As such it allows us to explore how established nations, culturally diverse societies and ethnic minorities transform around its making and dissemination.

“We will be looking at what happens to historical narratives, moral values and national and personal identities when politicians, policymakers, third-sector professionals and community members come together to turn tangible and intangible cultural products into digital data.

Originally from Israel, now British, and of Jewish and Polish heritage, Dr Pasternak feels the subject matter of the project is of significance to individuals and societies alike. But he also believes that the current global interest in the impact of politics on national and personal identities makes this the perfect time to embark on this project.

He said: “At the moment we are living in a time when it is plainly visible how culture and cultural differences have become key political benefits as well as challenges in many countries. We will be looking into the way that majority and minority communities turn to digital heritage in order to claim and reshape spaces, histories and various social rights. Digital heritage is a medium that confronts the past and the present with each other, so our research will have both historical and contemporary value.


DigiCONFLICT will explore the impact of digital heritage on contemporary engagements with the past in specific national frameworks in Poland, Sweden and Israel. Focusing on oral history, photography and multimedia museums as some of the most common media used to digitalize cultural heritage, the project responds to the Call’s ‘Critical Engagements with Digital Heritage’ trajectory, endeavoring to challenge widespread claims about the universality and democratizing abilities of digital heritage. Even though digital heritage maintains the potential to increase cohesion across nations and social groups, it is equally used to cement elite power structures, define what counts as cultural heritage, and determine whose cultural heritage is worthy of preservation. While acknowledging the role digital heritage plays in shaping and distributing cultural heritage, the project’s point of departure is that digital heritage cannot be considered in separation from historical, cultural and national contexts.

The project has three main aims:

  1. to explore how national politics affect digital definitions of cultural heritage
  2. to investigate who creates and engages with digital heritage, and how, and
  3. to study how the scope and value of cultural heritage are being negotiated and reformulated in a
    digital context.

The consortium will elaborate innovative research approaches to digital heritage through analysis of policy documents related to the case studies, to understand how specific institutions, governments and communities define, mark, and share cultural heritage. To achieve its aims, the consortium will employ interviews with professionals and members of communities who participate in the digitalization of cultural heritage. It will study what parameters affect the creation of digital heritage products, inquire what is gained and lost when cultural heritage becomes digital, and explore who the main beneficiaries are. Findings will mainly be disseminated via scholarly and mainstream publications, workshops, and a dedicated interactive website. 

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12201067879?profile=originalThe ‘Jubilee’ Collection amassed by one of the first specialist antique photographica dealers and collectors in London, the late Beryl Vosburgh will go under the hammer at Special Auction Services in Newbury on Thursday, 3 May and is expected to realise in excess of £30,000.

The auction comprises items from Jubilee Photographica, Beryl's shop as well as those from her own 40-year collection. It comprises a multitude of fine images, including works by Julia Margaret Cameron, William Fox Talbot – one of the founders of modern photography, Angus McBean and Cecil Beaton, theatrical images, Hattie Jacques’ collection of postcards of Gaiety Girls, Daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, photographic jewellery, stereoscopic images, photograph albums and topographical images from around the world. However, the core is several thousand cartes de visite, which are of huge social interest as precursors to photographic postcards, are expected to be very popular amongst collectors. In a time of formal manners and growing interest in photography, it was in Paris in 1857 that the photographer André Disdéri (see images) promoted the idea of putting a small albumen photographic print on a visiting card and Nadar, also in Paris, soon followed suit (see images). Studios opened in major cities around the world and the exchange of cartes became a craze; soon most towns of any size in wealthier countries housed studios. The collection focuses strongly on the glorious early years up to the mid-1860s, exemplified by the London-based Frenchman Camille Silvy (see images), whose cartes show unrivalled crispness, depth of tone and compositional skill. The majority of the images show individuals sitting or standing – sometimes in discomfort owing to the length of exposure – in studios, but Beryl’s attention means that she collected enchanting family groups, children with toys and dolls, cartes taken outside, views around the world, sitters in British India and other parts of the Empire, as well as circus attractions, famous politicians and royalty.

12201068659?profile=originalOne carte from around 1860 shows the popular comic actor Edward Sothern sporting huge side whiskers as the amiable but foolish aristocrat Lord Dundreary in the British play ‘Our American Cousin’ by Tom Taylor. It was from this that the bushy sideburns were give the name ‘Dundreary whiskers’ and the image reflects the changing times, with Victorians being depicted in a less refined and stuffy way. Another depicts a young man photographed in India with dark hair and a beard who lost an arm, probably in the Indian Mutiny of 1857. Lot estimates range from £50 to £80 upwards, making history affordable.

Hugo Marsh, Director at Special Auction Services says: “This really is a fascinating collection and a real reflection of social history. Beryl made her career out of buying and selling but it was her passion more than a job; she also took very special care sorting her cartes de visite into categories thus indicating her dedication to defining and presenting the past in the best possible way. We have not seen a collection this large since the 1990s and we anticipate the lots being very popular with collectors in the UK as well as worldwide.

The catalogue will be published here shortly

BPH published an obituary of Beryl Vosburgh here

About Beryl Vosburgh

Jubilee Photographica started life as a general antique stall in Camden Passage market in the mid-1960s. Beryl and her best friend Judy Moraes used to fill their toddlers’ pushchairs with antiques and wheel stock from their Islington homes to Camden Passage each week. There was such a high demand for their carefully selected dolls, lace, china, ephemera and photographica that the pushchairs' suspension couldn't take it anymore and they decided to get a permanent shop to sell their wares.

As she confessed she preferred spending time with the camera and photograph collectors to the doll people, so Jubilee focused on selling photographica and soon became an institution. It was one of the very first places in London where you could buy Daguerrotypes, ambrotypes, union cases, cartes de visite, cabinet cards, topographical prints, famous photographers, albums, stereo cards and viewers, old cameras and lenses, photographic jewellery, magic lanterns and slides all under one roof and in some volume. It was the go-to destination for those interested in the history of photography mostly due to Beryl's great eye and knowledge, but also because of her reasonable prices and friendly welcome. Collectors would be waiting outside the shop before it opened and were still there with a pile of images on their laps at closing time. Beryl couldn't help offering discounts to anyone she liked or thought needed encouraging in their collecting.

She was notorious for her own unique categorisation, especially of the cartes in her shop with sections for: "Photographers Who've Changed Addresses", "Nice Hats", "Pretty Crinolines" and even "Why Did They Go To The Photographers?"

A variety of well-known personalities discovered Jubilee and crossed her threshold including Terence Donovan, Derek Jarman, Dustin Hoffman and even Michael Jackson!

Beryl was a regular at every specialist photographica auction and event. Her list of clients grew to become a ‘Who's Who’ of leading lights in the photography world from prominent collectors such as Michael G Wilson and Brian May to institutions such as the Kodak Museum and the National Portrait Gallery.

 As well as being a well-respected dealer and passionate collector, Beryl was an actress and Radio and TV presenter. She trained at RADA in the 1950s where she met Dick Vosburgh (1929-2007), the writer, lyricist, actor and broadcaster. They married in 1953 and had six children. After graduating from RADA Beryl was snapped up by the BBC for their radio series: "The Younger Generation Under 21 Parade" which she starred in for two years gaining celebrity status at the time. She went onto appear in many radio and TV shows including "Mrs Dale's Diaries"; the 1961 film: "A Little Of What She Fancied"; the Associated Rediffusion series "No Hiding Place"; and in the aptly named "Jubilee" gala at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

In 1965 she became one of the regular presenters of the popular BBC children's programme Play School.

 Beryl was also a professional photographer. She supported her husband Dick's successful career often assisting him when he had plays on Broadway, on tour and in the West End and looking after the children when Dick was heavily involved in a project. As a result her acting career was often put on hold but photography became something she could do to bridge the gap and she never went anywhere without her camera. Her work primarily focused on London street photography in the early 1970s and she went onto photograph numerous theatrical productions and take headshots and Spotlight pictures of countless leading actors and actresses. She took photos for Millers Antique guides and was a regular at Rencontres d’Arles and Bièvres Internationale.

 Furthering her passion for photography Beryl wrote articles for many magazines on collecting photographica and taking pictures; she was a founding member of the Royal Photographic Society Historical Group and the Magic Lantern Society. She often lent items from her own collection to be reproduced in books relating to the history of photography.

 In the 1980s she acquired the late Hattie Jacques' collection of Grandpas' Lovelies and regularly gave lectures on these Edwardian music hall beauties (such as Zena and Phyllis Dare, Marie Studholme and Gladys Cooper). She also lectured on other specialisms including Islington photographers, interesting backs of cartes and rare magic lantern slides. She travelled the World buying and selling images and regularly had stalls at photo fairs in London, France and New York. She had a huge amount of like-minded friends in far flung places who often wrote to her asking her to look out for their specialist subject matters.

Jubilee finally closed in 2002 after over 30 years of trading when rising rents and business rates made it hard to make a profit and Beryl felt the need to slow down. Testament to the relationships forged over the years she sent out a note to clients and friends saying: "Beryl is retiring from Jubilee Photographica on 23rd March 2002. There will be sherry and crisps and Kleenex available. Goodbye and I love you all!"

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12201070679?profile=originalPhilip Prodger, Head of Photographs Collection at the National Portrait Gallery left on Thursday, 29 March 2018 after almost four years in the role, and will return to the United States.

In a statement, yesterday, he said: "Today was my last day at the National Portrait Gallery. I will continue to work with the gallery as a guest curator for a new show next year and will announce my move to a new position later this spring/summer. I'm grateful for many wonderful memories and an incredible team of five photo curators and a doctoral student - not only extraordinarily talented, they have been like family to me." He leaves as the exhibition Victorian Giants. The birth of art photography has attracted critical, public and royal acclaim.

Prodger was founding Curator of Photography at the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts, before joining the NPG as Head of Photographs Collection, on 1 June 2014. He replaced long-serving curator of photographs Terence Pepper OBE who took on a part-time role from January 2014, as the Gallery’s Senior Special Advisor on Photographs. 

Read about the NPG's photography collection here:

Image: National Portrait Gallery.

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12201076662?profile=originalI grew up on a farm for the first thirteen years of my life. I played in the fields and forests of England, and wandered the cart paths with my brother. I saw him for the first time in thirty years last August, after the passing of my father. We went back and walked those very same paths where we grew up and looked at the magnificent trees planted along the edge of the fields. After all that had happened, it was an emotional and healing journey for both of us...

The innocence of being a child growing up on the land returned, the innocence of something that is never really forgotten. I still am a country boy at heart; I still love the land and the trees. I always will.

It's a pity then, that this seems to be just a "filler" exhibition from the V&A. No press release, two sentences on the website and no information about the images such as details of process etc... I had to dig into the collection to find the information you read here, including the text descriptions beneath the images. For such a magical and mythical subject that has fascinated human beings since the beginning of time, you might have expected a more in depth investigation.

As an addendum I have included my favourite tree images. You will have your own. The last image in particular has that element of threat and wonder that makes the forest such a rich, fluid and evocative space.

Dr Marcus Bunyan for Art Blart


Gustave Le Gray
In the Forest of Fontainbleau (Bas-Bréau)
Gold-toned albumen print from waxed paper negative
Chauncey Hare Townshend Bequest 1868

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12201081493?profile=originalThe news of the death of Peter James from organ failure which has just been announced has shocked and saddened the world of photographic history. Photography has lost one of its most active and accomplished historians and a wider champion for photography. In a community which is not a large one Pete was a giant and the words of one long time collaborator and friend sum up the sense of loss: "British photo history will not be the same .... Pete was an unsung hero. He achieved more, and to greater effect, than most in the field. He was truly astonishing." Another historian commented: "a great loss to the field as Pete was universally loved and his work widely admired...I will miss his wonderfully laconic emails and dry wit."

Pete was Head of Photography at the Library of Birmingham for over 25 years and a former Chairman of the Committee of National Photography Collections. He was one of the catalysts for, and a founding member of, the Photographic Collections Network. He received the Royal Photographic Society's Colin Ford Award for Curatorship and received the Society's Fellowship twice. 

During the course of his career he worked with a wide range of photography organisations in Birmingham including Ten:8, Building Sights, PhotoCall, Arts Council West Midlands, Photopack and Seeing the Light/Rhubarb. He was co-founder (2012) and Co-Director of GRAIN: the photographic hub and network for the West Midlands.

He developed and delivered partnership projects with a range of academic institutions including exhibitions, PhD supervision, awards, conferences, lectures, research and was a visiting lecturer at a number of universities including BCU, University of Birmingham, Falmouth, Nottingham, Staffordshire, and Ulster and delivered papers at a range of academic and photographic conferences. He has been a portfolio reviewer at events such as Rhubarb Rhubarb, Format Photo Festival and for GRAIN.

12201082273?profile=originalHe researched and curated exhibitions of historical and contemporary photography at institutions including the V&A, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Ikon Gallery, the Library of Birmingham, The Royal Photographic Society, and Museum Africa, Johannesburg amongst other venues.

Before leaving the Library of Birmingham in October 2015 he completed working on exhibition / publication projects with Mat Collishaw and Broomberg & Chanarin. He was also a speaker at the Fast Forward: Women and Photography conference at Tate and contributed an essay for the catalogue accompany the exhibition At Home with Vanley Burke (Ikon July 2015). (Information part taken from PARC).

One of his last major projects Thresholds, a virtual reality installation with the artist Mat Collishaw, based on Talbot’s exhibition of photogenic drawings in Birmingham in 1839 opened at Somerset House in May 2017 and is currently on show at the National Science and Media Museum, Bradford. At the time of his death is was researching the life of the early Birmingham photographer George Shaw. 

Accomplished and prolific, Pete was also a friend of many and willing to share his knowledge. His publications and work will be a lasting legacy for someone who still had much more to give. 

A fuller obituary will be published shortly. 

Pete's family has published a notice on Twitter here: @patinotype.

UPDATE: Pete's funeral will take place 3 April 2018 at Lodge Hill Crematorium, B29 5AA with a gathering at 5pm at Birmingham Midland Institute, B3 3BS. Please email: to confirm attendance. 

Pete was interviewed for the Oral History of British Photography based at the British Library. His interview is embargoed until 2020. With thanks to Shirley Read for reminding BPH of this.  

Images courtesy Michael Pritchard.  Pete James at the Library of Birmingham with the RPS Historical Group. 

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12201074067?profile=originalIC Visual Lab is holding a symposium, ACTIVATING THE ARCHIVE: Contemporary Uses of Visual Archives, which takes place at the Arnolfini, Bristol, on 5 May. This one-day symposium explores the many ways archives are activated within the arts through a series of talks with international artists, curators, and researchers.

The possibilities of visual archives sit at the forefront of this event, which is reflected in the work by the invited speakers; Francesca Seravalle, Maja Daniels, Charbel Saad, Vicki Jackson, Thomas Sauvin, and Amak Mahmoodian. All of whom are reinterpreting archival material, building new archives, or facilitating the use of existing archives within their respective practices. This event is supported by the Arts Council of England and in collaboration with Arnolfini.

Read more and book here

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12201074472?profile=originalHit the North celebrates northern photography across five decades. From incisive studio portraiture to grand rural vistas to quiet urban details, photographs will fill Manchester Central Library’s first-floor exhibition space. The show is curated by Manchester-based Hobo Photo, which promotes photography with high-quality roving exhibitions and prints are for sale.

In 1972, while studying photography at Manchester Polytechnic, Daniel Meadows took over a disused barber’s shop in Moss Side’s Greame Street. People came along to the ‘free photography studio’ and had their portraits taken for nothing. Daniel put the pictures in the shop window and distributed prints to people’s houses, but after eight weeks he ran out of money and had to close down. Feeling guilty because people could no longer see the photographs, he laid them out on big wooden boards which he nailed to a tree in the nearby park. Only in retrospect did Daniel realise that this had been his first exhibition.

Now widely regarded as one of the key British photographers of the postwar era, Daniel’s work is held in many major collections, including The Hyman Collection, The British Library, the Arts Council England Collection, the Martin Parr Foundation and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Daniel was the subject of a major retrospective at The National Media Museum in 2011-12, which subsequently toured nationally. Other notable solo exhibitions have been held at Photofusion, the Irish Gallery of Photography, the Photographers’ Gallery, Impressions Gallery, the Institute of Comtemporary Arts and the Oxford Museum of Modern Art (curated by Nicholas Serota). But being a photographer of the people for the people, Daniel has always found himself putting on exhibitions at more community-based places, from Nelson Arndale Centre in 1977 to a church hall in Miles Platting in 2017.

Based in Salford, rising star artist Phoebe Kiely prints her photographs by hand in a darkroom using traditional analogue processes. Despite only graduating from Manchester Metropolitan University in 2015, her work has already been exhibited at Tate Modern in London and Open Eye in Liverpool, and she has also been nominated for two prestigious prizes: the 2018 Paul Huf Award and the 2017 First Book Award.

Her first book, They Were My Landscape, will be launched this May by leading photography publisher Mack at the Photo London art fair. Gritty urban details and fleeting glimpses of people accumulate and - just as with the prints in this exhibition - Phoebe’s everyday observations are elevated to the extraordinary by her poetic way of looking.

Matthew Murray’s latest book, Saddleworth: Responding To A Landscape was published in 2017 with essays by the artist Richard Billingham and Martin Barnes, Senior Curator of Photographs at The Victoria and Albert Museum.

Despite sitting in a long tradition of landscape art, the dark metallic photographs of Saddleworth in this show are the result of Matthew’s deeply personal vision, and reflect the circumstances of his life at the time they were taken.

Matthew’s work has been exhibited at leading institutions and events internationally, including at both the National Portrait Gallery and the Photographers’ Gallery in London, Paris Photo, Unseen and Huis Marseille in Amsterdam, the Rencontres d’Arles photography festival and Fotografie Museum Berlin. His photographs are held in numerous private and public collections, including The British Library.

Since 1968, Ian Macdonald has consistently photographed the hinterland of his native Cleveland in northern England, printing his work by hand using traditional silver-based processes.

The quiet pictures of people, industry and landscape in this exhibition not only communicate Ian’s strong feelings for his home region, they also convey his great passion for photography as an art form.

Ian’s work has been exhibited widely and is held in many public and private art collections from the Victoria and Albert Museum to the Danish Royal Library.

Chris Harrison was born and grew up in the north east of England. At 15, he became an apprentice in the local shipyard, and he subsequently took up photography while serving as a sniper in the British Army. Eventually, he earned a master’s degree from the Royal College of Art.

Under the Hood is the series of portraits Chris made of lads from Salford in 1994. Redolent of the grand tradition of painting, the lighting and drapery accords Chris’s subjects gravity and status. Yet the portraits are stubbornly photographic, especially in the down-to-earth elements such as bags, cans, fags and framing, which all gently jar against the set up. But most importantly, in between all this, there is something unresolved, uncertain, perhaps even edgy, as these lads stare back at us across a quarter of a century.

Chris was awarded the 16th Bradford Fellowship in Photography at the National Media Museum. His work has been shown widely including at the Rencontres d’Arles photography festival, the Barbican, Tate Britain, the German Historical Museum and the Imperial War Museum. His photographs are included in the collections of the V&A Museum, the Imperial War Museum, the National Media Museum, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, the Irish Gallery of Photography, the Northern Gallery of Contemporary Art and the British Council.

Paul Floyd Blake left school and started work in the industrial laundry business, shelving his dreams of art college, which didn’t seem attainable to a mixed-race boy from the working class. However, he always kept up his interest in art, and as a grown-up he finally did a degree in photography, graduating with first-class honours in 2005.

Ever since, Paul has worked full-time as a photographer. Based in the North of England, he has achieved great things, most notably winning one of photography’s highest-profile awards, the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize in 2009. His work has since been exhibited nationally and internationally, from The National Portrait Gallery to the Foundation Pitti Florence.

The photographs included in this exhibition are from Paul’s cleverly-titled series Give Us A Sign. Perhaps they aren’t portraits, but they are - like all of Paul’s work - respectful yet inquiring, subtly showing us that there is greater depth and complexity than we may first have imagined. Whether or not God is in the pictures, of course, we cannot know. But if He is, he has quite some sense of humour.

For over 25 years, Tessa Bunney has photographed rural life, fascinated by the way the landscape is shaped by humans, from hill farmers near her home in North Yorkshire to Icelandic puffin hunters, from Finnish ice swimmers to Romanian nomadic shepherds.

The work in this exhibition celebrates the domestic flower growers of northern England, both past and present. Flower farms were once a familiar feature of the British countryside, but were gradually expunged by industrialised growing methods in the 19th century and then globalisation in the 20th. But now in the 21st, small flower farms are springing up again, fed by fresh interest in environmental sustainability and local seasonal produce.

Tessa’s work has been nominated for prestigious prizes including the Prix Pictet, and put into book form by several leading publishers such as Dewi Lewis and teNeues. She is also regularly commissioned by editorial clients such as the Financial Times Magazine and charitable organisations including Oxfam and Save the Children.

Exhibited widely, Tessa’s work has been shown at many of the UK’s key photography institutions such as Impressions Gallery in Bradford and Photofusion in London, as well as at important photography festivals internationally, including Noorderlicht in the Netherlands and France’s Rencontres d’Arles.

Liza Dracup’s work is rooted the landscape and nature of the North. To quote the art critic Michael Prodger, her pictures are “not about capturing a particular moment in time but about timelessness. Her focus is less on something fleeting … and more on the long afterlife of places, plants and animals."

These words ring true in the images of taxidermied birds and mammals included in this show. Photographed in a style reminiscent of Dutch still life painting, they also reveal just how extraordinary and valuable the ordinary and the local can be, illuminating a northern natural history we might otherwise ignore. The pictures also confirm Liza’s belief that there is an awe in nature, and it is still to be found in Britain.

Liza has been nominated for several top art photography prizes, including the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize in 2012 and the Prix Pictet in 2009. Her work has been exhibited at the likes of Impressions Gallery, Mercer Art Gallery, the Street Level Photoworks, the Dye House Gallery, and the Pitzhanger Manor House & Gallery.

First Floor, Central Library, St Peter's Square, Manchester

19 April-30 June 2018


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Photographica 2018, London, 20 May 2018

12201054499?profile=originalThe date for Photographic 2018 is closing fast, as usual it will take place at the regular venue The  Royal Horticultural Society's Lindley Hall, 80 Vincent Square, London SW1P 2PB on the 20 May 2018. Public entry is from 10am-4.00pm and admission is £5 on the door. This year there will be more than 100 stalls selling user and collectable cameras, consumables, lenses, literature and images. It is not a trade show for new equipment. If you fancy a table to clear that build up of photographic equipment phone 01684 594526 . Early buyers tickets can be obtained from the same phone number.

Any late updates and more information can be found at ;




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12201076481?profile=originalNew national histories of photography are appearing. Some are recuperative, supplementing the canon with missing or underestimated figures. Others are methodological retellings, refreshing the canon with new historiographical perspectives. Some are bent on justice, adapting postcolonial, decolonizing, or settler-colonial theory to the writing of counter-histories. The Canadian situation is somewhat unique. There is no authoritative story to retell, as a national history of photography has never been written. It exists in the collective imagination, based on a substantial repertoire of texts by archivists, curators, critics, theorists, and photographers. Never consolidated – never imbued with canonical authority – the idea of such an official history nevertheless invites reconsideration in the form of counter-histories. This paper considers the entanglement of history and counter-history in photographic studies, posing the deceptively simple question: which is which?

At Birkbeck's History and Theory of Photography Research Centre

All events free and open to all, at 43 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD

4 April 2018, 6:00-7:30

Keynes Library (room 114)

Martha Langford (Gail and Stephen A. Jarislowsky Institute for Studies in Canadian Art, Concordia University in Montreal)

Who Can Tell? Histories and Counter-Histories of Photography in Canada.

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12201072663?profile=originalThis exhibition showcases materials from the archive of Jo Spence, British photographer, writer, educator and self-described ‘cultural sniper’. Focusing on Spence’s radical practices, it displays a range of items that provides insight into Spence’s collaborative work process. They highlight the dynamic nature of the work, as projects, themes and ideas constantly interact and respond to each other: classed and gendered identity; photography as a transformative and political tool; the uses of personal, political and photographic histories to understand the present and change the future.

Curated, from concept to cleaning, by Patrizia Di Bello, Frances Hatherley, Christie Johnson, Hazal Özdemir, Leanne Petersen, Lucy Purcell, Linda Robins da Silva, Elka Smith, Helen Walker, and Chloe Wood. Supported by Birkbeck Alumni Innovation Grant and Omni.

Details on PELTZ GALLERY website 


10 March - 28 April 2018


43 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD


Photographic Collaborations in the Jo Spence Memorial Library Archive

Come to see the exhibition, or join us for roundtable discussions on:

Thursday 19 April, 6-7:30

Cinderella: Women, Class and Fairy Tales in Jo Spence's work,

with Marina Warner and Frances Hatherley, chaired by Lynda Nead.

Thursday 26 April, 6-7:30

Collaborative Projects: Pleasures and Pains

with Rosy Martin, Carla Mitchell, Ego Ahaiwe Sowinski, and Jacob Bard-Rosenberg, chaired by Patrizia Di Bello


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Publication: Snips & Snaps: the Friths...

Just alerting people to the recent publication of "Snips & snaps : the Friths : a nineteenth century family of portraitists, miniaturists, caricaturists and photographic artists" by Noel Tozer which looks at the Frith siblings - Frederick, Henry and Letitia - Australian (and New Zealand, in the case of Henry) photographers, and their earlier lives as silhouettists and artists.

The book is available through Amazon and selected museum bookshops. 

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12201070287?profile=originalI am seeking information about this albumen portrait. I believe this is Richard Chenevix Trench 1836-1861, one of the many children of Richard Chenevix Trench, Irish poet and Anglican Archbishop. The son tragically died at age 25. My main interest is the photographer. Does any member recognize a style or size that may lead to identify the photographer? The image is 19.5 x 14.5 cm. "Requisat in Pace" may have been added later?

Of special interest is the chair, I find it very Lewis Carroll-y. Has anyone done a study of British photographer's leather chairs? Seems like a field for future inquiry.


Many Thanks in advance,

David McGreevy

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12201083292?profile=originalThe Centre for Image Research and Diffusion (CRDI) of the Girona City Council and the Association of Archivists of Catalonia, are calling the 15th Image and Research International Conference, which will be held in the Palau de Congressos de Girona from 22-23 November. On 21st and 24th, two workshops related to the areas of interest of the Conference will be organized.

See the call and provisional programme here;

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12201082864?profile=originalArt photography collections are held at regional museums, libraries and archives across the country but often without specialist curatorial expertise and, subsequently, many photography collections tend to be 'dormant' and inaccessible to experts and audiences, and curators responsible for photography collections do not have access to the necessary staffing and financial resources, or knowledge and specialist skills to actively develop their collections.

Building on the success of a two year programme, the Art Fund has agreed to support a third year of the Victoria and Albert Museum’s programme to help support the development of curatorial expertise in art photography, working with regional museum partners. 

Programme Aims

  • To provide an unparalleled practical training opportunity in photographs curatorship in the UK to build expertise in the field and, specifically, to equip a curator with specialist knowledge of photography and the ability to care for and develop photograph collections;
  • To enable UK organisations to raise the public profile of their permanent collections of photographs and to improve public access, both physically and intellectually;

The Programme

The V&A will work with a regional partner, chosen by open competition.  The successful partner will have a permanent collection of art photography and be able to identify a discrete project for the assistant curator to deliver which will benefit the collection, the organisation and its audiences.  It is likely that the successful partner will not currently have staff expertise in art photography. This project will result in material outcomes for the regional partner which could include, but are not limited to, an exhibition, a refocus of the collecting policy, a publication or cataloguing of the collection.

The project may, if wished, be related to a specific theme, for example, processes and techniques, British industry, British colonialism, Protest, Childhood, or Landscape.  Tangible outcomes will be agreed with the chosen partner at the outset of the project, including a requirement for at least one seminar to be held towards the end of the placement to share good practice learnt in the context of the particular project.

The V&A and the selected partner will work together to support the aims of the programme and will be required to enter into a contract regarding the delivery of the project, including confirmation of the organisation’s capacity to support the assistant curator, by providing a nominated support manager for the post-holder, normally a senior curator and agreeing a regular reporting process.

The partner will contribute or source project costs for the participant’s placement project, working with the partner’s photographs collection, using the small contribution from the project budget (£3,000) as seed money.

Once the partner is selected and project agreed, an assistant curator will be recruited. Participants will spend approximately six months in the Photographs section of the Word and Image Department at the V&A, with a V&A curator as mentor and six months at the partner museum working on the agreed project.

The V&A will support the post-holder in developing their curatorial skills through work with the V&A photography collection and via participation in relevant V&A training modules.  The V&A mentor will assist the participant in defining and developing their placement museum project and provide mentoring support over the six months they deliver the project at the partner museum.

The Art Fund will provide the V&A with funding to employ the assistant curator for the duration of the project on a 12 month fixed term contract each and travel expenses to enable the post-holder to work between the V&A and the regional partner.  There will also be attendance at relevant conferences and visits to other important photographic collections. 


Partner selection:

Deadline for museums applications:       20 April 2018

Panel meet to select regional partners:   w/c 23 April 2018

Assistant curator selection:

Advertisements:  w/c 7 May 2018

Deadline for applications: 31 May 2018

Interview panel for assistant curator (regional partner to attend):  early June 2018


Based at the V&A: July – December 2018

Based at the regional partner: January-June 2019



Should you have any questions, please contact

Julia Brettell, National Programmes Manager 

Victoria and Albert Museum

South Kensington



Tel: 020 7942 2537


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12201070457?profile=originalThe National Library of Scotland is undertaking the first major survey of its extensive photographic collections, to establish the breadth, depth and quality of the photographs. In this talk, Photographic Collections Curator Blake Milteer will provide insight into the survey project's goals, processes, and significant discoveries.

Tuesday 27 March, at 1400
National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge Building
See more here:

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12201069453?profile=originalThe University of St Andrews Library, Special Collections Division will be hosting a conference on the broader themes surrounding Stereo Photography during 18-19 October, 2018. This is presented in conjunction with the 2018 St Andrews Photography Festival, 'Stereo Views of Scotland' which runs throughout the month of October.

The topics are wide-ranging and will cover both the historic as well as the contemporary. This two day conference is an opportunity for researchers, historians, photographers, collectors, curators, collections staff and photo-enthusiasts alike to come together, in the home of Scottish Photography and picturesque town of St Andrews to gain a better understanding of the birth, development and evolving media that is stereoscopy.


12201069472?profile=originalA call for papers is now open. Submissions should link to stereo photography or collections in some context but do not have to be specific to Scottish or British Photography. Please submit an abstract of no more than 250 words for your 20 minute presentation.


Panel proposals for 45 minute sessions are also welcome. These should be limited to 500 words. Please also submit a list of suggested panellists along with their affiliations.


Please submit all proposals to Rachel Nordstrom at


More information can be found at:,1994101,en.php 


All proposals should be submitted by 18 May, 2018 so that we may have a completed programme for publication by 31 May, 2018.

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12201082657?profile=originalWorking with one of the largest, richest and most diverse research collections, you will use your specialist knowledge of South Asian art history and archaeology to carry out cataloguing and collection management projects relating to prints, drawings and photographs and associated ephemera.

This section’s remit expands to managing the former India Office collection of Prints, Drawings and Photographs as well as other major visual collections in the Library including the British Library Works of Art (Contemporary British Art), Kodak archive and Fox Talbot collection. 

Closing date: 22 April 2018

Interview date: Week Commencing 14 May 2018

To apply:

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Information request: H G Crabtree

12201080494?profile=originalOver the past six weeks we at  Trinity Mirror central archive have reviewed our holdings from the Birmingham Gazette. A number of images have come to light by a photographer by the name of H G Crabtree. He appears to have worked for the paper from the early 1930s to the mid 1940s.

Any information about his life and career at the Birmingham Gazette would be appreciated 


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This workshop will explore medical, social, and cultural meanings of the eye and vision in contemporary and historical perspective. Included is a paper from Colin Harding titled: Repairing War’s Ravages: Horace Nicholls’ photographs of prosthetic masks. 

Registration is free. 

For more information see:

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12201078896?profile=originalThe Women's History Network West Midlands is presenting a symposium on the Voice of Women in the Great War and its Aftermath on 13-14 April 2018 at the Black Country Living Museum, Dudley. Included is a paper by Colin Harding titled Shooting the Messengers: Horace Nicholls’ photographs of women in uniform. Colin is currently undertaking a PhD looking at the work of Nicholls and is based at University of Brighton and the Imperial War Museum.

See the programme here:

and details of how to book here:

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