From the beginning, the world's photographers have focused their cameras on architecture. With unerring perspective and unlimited capacity to record detail and texture, the new medium of photography held out the promise of perfect accuracy. And especially in the earliest days of photography when exposures were long, buildings offered an important advantage over humans as subjects: they did not move.
The first great publication based on photographs, Excursions Daguerriennes, presented images of famed buildings and ancient monuments taken around the world within months of Daguerre's announcement. But these pioneering pictures were reproduced in the form of engravings, because the ability to print photographs in ink was many years away. For the next half-century, travelers and architects relied on actual photographic prints to capture accurate--and often beautiful--portraits of cities and buildings far away.
This exhibition is not intended to provide a comprehensive survey; instead, its goal is to explore the range and diversity of architectural works from the first 75 years of photography.
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