Recent arrival to the collection

Nellie Keeler- by Bogardus

The scan does not do the original justice. An amazingly beautifully preserved CDV of a Barnum performer. She was originally from Kokomo, Indiana. Hired in 1879 at age 11, she weighed 28 lbs. The photo is then most likely also from that year or within a year or two after that date.


For more information, check out quasi-modo.net

Two new acquisitions on the way…

Just added two more cartes-de-visite to the collection, both Mathew Bradys. My first Brady celebrity card – General Joseph Hooker, and my first Brady from his Washington studio. The DC studio mark seems far more rare than the New York studio, so far. Maybe I’m just not looking in the right places for them, but out of the seven I have, only one is the DC studio, and of the ones I’ve looked at, maybe 50 or so, I think I’ve only seen the DC imprint two or three times.

Philadelphia Map – Victorian Photographers

Here is the Philadelphia map of Victorian era photography studios.

STUDIO NAME ADDRESS DATES OF OPERATION
J. Creamer & Co 18 South 8th Street unknown
J.W. Hurn 1319 Chestnut Street unknown
Gilbert’s Cartes-de-Visite, Photograph and Ambrotype Gallery 1524 Ridge Avenue above Brown Street unknown
C. Tolan, Photographer 924 North 2nd Street (above Poplar)  unknown
Lovejoy, Photographer 500 South 2nd unknown
F.S. Keeler 8th & Market Streets, SE corner unknown
H.C. Vansyckel 532 North 2nd Street unknown
Bellis, Photographer 508 Arch Street unknown
Lathrop’s Studio of Fine Photography 43 North 8th Street unknown
Sawyer & Bro. 522 North 2nd unknown
J.R. Laughlan’s Photograph Rooms 12th and Market, SW corner unknown
G.D. Wise 2nd Street & Christian, NW corner unknown
F. Gutekunst 704 & 706 Arch Street unknown (early)
F. Gutekunst 712 Arch Street unknown (late)
J.A. Keenan 526 South 2nd Street unknown
Rhoads’ New Photograph Gallery 1800 Frankford Avenue (corner Montgomery Avenue) unknown
E.W. Warren’s Gallery 1628 Market Street unknown
Chas. H. Spieler 722 Chestnut unknown
Broadbent & Co. 912 & 914 Chestnut unknown (early)
Broadbent & Co. 814 Chestnut ca. 1861
Wenderoth, Taylor & Brown 912 & 914 Chestnut unknown (late)
W.W. Seeler 8th Street & Spring Garden Street, SE corner unknown
Gilbert & Bacon 40 North 8th Street & 820 Arch Street unknown
M.P. Simons 120 Chestnut Street 1846-?
L.A. Sawyer 159 North 8th Street unknown
Rhoads & Shane 1316 Girard Avenue unknown
P.E. Lehillman 914 Arch Street unknown
T. Colbeck 8th Street & Sansom (SE corner) unknown
Applegate 8th & Vine Streets unknown
Van Loan Gallery, L.H. Purnell, Artist, Daguerrian Parlor 159 Chestnut Street 1840s
Willard, Daguerrian Parlor Market Street & N. 16th Street, A-B 1840s
Chas. G. Crane unknown unknown
J.R. Black unknown unknown

Good article on Artists’ Statements

I’ve been getting asked for these things more and more recently, and it drives me nuts – it’s not that I’m incapable of writing something thoughtful and relevant about my work, but I’m often submitting different bodies of work to different target audiences, and I have to compose something de novo every time I submit. It’s good to hear that serious gallerists find artists statements somewhere between a distraction and an obstacle to sales.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-grant/are-artists-statements-re_b_701604.html

My most recent artist’s statement:

My work is about human relationships and perception. “Human Commodities” uses humor to deal with a critically serious topic – the way in which we categorize, pigeonhole and commodify each other especially when it comes to intimate relationships. Men, especially, and especially by other men, are categorized as desirable or not based on their physical attributes – musculature, age, race, hair or lack thereof. When seeking a partner, we tend to use food analogies to describe the object of desire. This is natural, as sex is surpassed as a primal urge perhaps only by food. However, by objectifying people, especially through a food metaphor, it reduces them and de-humanizes them. I mean to interrogate and trouble this objectifying process by throwing into (comic) relief the process of commodification of men. I mean to challenge the viewer to question the very stereotypes they use to categorize objects of sexual desire – what makes one man qualify for “prime beef” instead of “sausage”, and can those very same criteria be turned on their head situationally to transform the subject?

How does that work for you?

Victorian Era Photography Studios in New York

I’ve begun a project to catalog and map the locations of Victorian-era photography studios in Washington DC, New York and Philadelphia. Using my own collection as a starting point, and skimming back-marks off cartes-de-visite and cased images on Ebay, I’ve come up with some lists, and I’ve begun to put them on a Google Map. Here is my New York list:

STUDIO NAME ADDRESS DATES OF OPERATION
R.A. Lewis 152 Chatham Street * unknown
K.W. Beniczky #2 New Chambers Street, corner of Chatham * unknown
R.A. Lord 164 Chatham Street * unknown
Bogardus 363 Broadway 1860s
Bogardus 872 Broadway late 1870s
Mathew Brady 359 Broadway (1853-1859)
Mathew Brady 643 Bleeker Street (1859-1860)
Mathew Brady 785 Broadway (1860-)
Chas. K. Bill 603 Broadway unknown
J. Gurney & Sons 707 Broadway unknown – early
J. Gurney & Sons 5th Avenue & 16th Street unknown – late
Glosser 827 Broadway unknown
Vaughan’s Gallery 228 Bowery unknown
Bailey’s Photograph Gallery 371 Canal Street unknown
Loud’s Celebrated Album Cards unknown unknown
Fernando Dessaur 145 8th Avenue unknown

* addresses no longer exist. New Chambers Street & Chatham Street are now approximately where New York City Civic Center and Police Headquarters are now located.

I will be doing the same for Washington DC and Philadelphia as I gather more information. These lists are obviously incomplete – if anyone has more information out there on other studios not captured on this list, please pass it along! My interest is in studios operating before 1900, ideally before 1880. If you have information about a given studio during the Daguerrian, wet plate, and the early Dry Plate eras, please include that as well. In my simplistic research, I’ve been finding that along with the change in media, studios moved around a lot – Mathew Brady had four different locations in New York City alone between 1850-1860.

Whole Plate camera on The Online Photographer

Just came across this post on The Online Photographer (a great blog if you’re not familiar with it):
http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2011/01/the-single-use-device.html

Although I do not consider my Whole Plate cameras to be “Single Use Devices”, I am truly in love with the format and am very happy to shoot with it, and even moreso to find another member of the (very small) whole plate clan.

Photography, Alternative Processes, Really Big Cameras, and other cool stuff

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