On the nature of Early Photography

January 15, 2008

“The camera has been seen as an image-making machine swiftly spewing out pictures as mechanized looms produced cloth for a new market. But the swift camera started to take shape only after 1855, through the combined effect of technological changes, the development of networks for the production and consumption of images, and the emergence of a mass market public. The first photographs were much closer to pre-industrial craft production, in which single, unique objects were made by hand.”

Marien, Mary WarnerPhotography, A Cultural History, New York: 2002, page 7


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