International Journal on S&I Media: new issue

IJSIM’s editorial board is proud to announce this new issue which includes three inspiring invited articles by Michael Pritchard (Royal Photographic Society, UK), Carlos Teixidor-Cadenas (Institute of Cultural Heritage of Spain) and Bruno Martins (University of Minas Gerais, Brazil), along with five peer-reviewed articles by Peter Blair (UK), Bradley Kagan (Australia), Stephen McBurney (UK), Esther Jacopin (France) and Volker Kuchelmeister (Australia). We are also proud to present on its cover an extraordinary stereoscopic negative by Jean Laurent from 1869 showing the Tower of Belém (Lisbon) and Laurent’s photographic laboratory cart. We take this opportunity to thank all the authors, reviewers and designers for their remarkable work in putting together this issue in such difficult times.

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IJSIM’s call for papers for next issue is open until 30th June 2021. Please find registration and submission informations here.

The stereoscopic negatives by J. Laurent in Portugal (1869)

In the next S&I Media conference, Carlos Teixidor (Cultural Heritage Institute, Madrid) will present the photographs taken by Jean Laurent in Portugal in 1869. A unique opportunity to see these negatives (Lisbon, Batalha, Tomar, Coimbra, Porto, Setúbal and Évora), and screened in 3D!

Jean (or Juan) Laurent started to work as a photographer in 1856 and by 1857 he was already taking stereoscopic views. Between 1861 and 1868 he was announced as the photographer for Queen Elizabeth II of Spain. In 1869 he traveled to Portugal to obtain city views and portrait the Portuguese royal family.

All his negatives from Portugal were made with the technique of wet collodion glass plates, using a small carriage as a photographic darkroom. Most of the prints were on albumin paper, but also some on leptographic paper. The Laurent archive is preserved in the Cultural Heritage Institute in Madrid. In total there are about 12,000 negatives by Laurent and his hired photographers. Among the stereoscopic negatives (13 x 18 cm format) there are 78 views of Portugal, mainly from Lisbon, Batalha, Tomar, Coimbra, Porto, Setúbal and Évora.

Carlos Teixidor Cadenas is the curator of historical photography at the Institute of Cultural Heritage of Spain (IPCE), Ministry of Culture and Sports, in Madrid. He has published several books, such as “Photography in the Canary Islands and Madeira. The era of daguerreotype, collodion and albumen 1839-1900” and “The postcard in Spain. 1892-1915” (Espasa, 1999).

‘The “dirty-footed Venuses” and their photographers’

We are pleased to reveal the title, blurb and a charming stereoscopic daguerreotype of Denis Pellerin’s keynote presentation at S&I Media 2021, next June. Nude photographs in general and stereoscopic daguerreotypes in particular are very popular among collectors. These images, usually beautifully made and very nicely tinted, are greatly enhanced by the sensation of depth the stereoscope provides. The viewers could imagine themselves very close to those voluptuous ladies and so great was the illusion that it only stopped short of actually being able to touch them. But who among those who enjoy those images knows the real story behind this artistic — and occasionally pornographic — production? Most exclusively made in France in the 1850s and 1860s these daguerreotypes may have cost the buyers a small fortune but they certainly cost the majority of the photographers who took them and the models who sat for them their freedom and more often than not their reputation. Photo historian Denis Pellerin reveals some of the sad tales behind the mirror-like surfaces of these outstanding daguerreotypes. Much more than mere flesh, the persons who undressed in front of the camera were young women who were dreaming of a better life and did not always realise there was a huge price to pay for the easy money they were earning by flaunting their veil-less charms.
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