The Past is Bright

The Autochrome Lumière

The turn of the 19th century often seems a rather drab period in retrospect, not least because we remember it primarily through grainy black & white images of somber-looking figures. However, though color photography was not really popularized until the invention of Kodachrome film in 1936, color processes have been around since the 1860s. One of these early techniques was Autochrome, patented in 1905 by the Lumiere Brothers (who, incidentally, opened the world’s first public cinema today in 1895). Adopted by several photographers over the years, Autochrome offers an vivid and surreal window on the past, its slightly too-rich colors imbuing each scene with a sense of fantasy.

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Conversations (1)

  • Josh
    Who is still working in auto chrome? I print gum bichromate, cyanotype and platinum and palladium- please reach out to me if you know who is currently working in this medium- <a href="http://www.joshlehrer.com" target="_blank">www.joshlehrer.com</a>. Thank you!
    • Posted By Josh
    • October 06, 2011 at 11:53PM
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