Friday, August 27, 2010

Life Enhancing Color (not handpainted) Photo's from Russia Circa 1910

One of the stunning color photographs from the Library of Congress collection
Once in a while an exhibition reveals treasures so stunning they drill themselves deep into ones psyche. Items or images so breathtaking that they become part of your soul and persona and something which dwells  with and rewards you throughout life. In my life I think of the Tutankhamen in New York, the Renoir  at  the Tate in London, and most recently the Deutsche Expressionisten I was privileged  to view at the Leopold in Vienna


The Boston Globe, to their eternal credit, has posted a series of photographs from the Library of Congress taken in the early years of the 20th century. They depict mainly provincial and rural scenes in the generally Muslim  area 0of the Russian Empire.They capture a time in history, before WW1 and the Russian Revolution which shows a world gone by. It is a world of peasants, the early industrial revolution, ethnic groups in colorful dress and so many visual delights.


To me the most amazing aspect is that these photographs were created using a painstaking process of taking the same image through different color filters.The end result is as near to reality as could be expected, much more so than hand colored photographs from the period and a tribute to the patience of the sitters who had to keep their pose for as long as it took to get the final result.


I do trust you will find these images as delightful as I have found them.

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