A repeat post from 2012. . .

Milkweed,” 1900, by Mary Frances Carpenter Paschallvia Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

This photo was part of a large group of “artistic photographs,” primarily by early women photographers, that was donated to the Library of Congress by Frances Benjamin Johnston. In the spring of 1900, she had used some of these images in an exhibition of work by American women photographers at the Exposition Universelle Internationale in Paris.

. . . I look down now. It is all changed.
Whatever it was I lost, whatever I wept for
Was a wild, gentle thing, the small dark eyes
Loving me in secret.
It is here. At a touch of my hand,
The air fills with delicate creatures
From the other world.

James Wright, from “Milkweed

Vintage landscape: Lacock Abbey

Lady's Elizabeth's, 1840s, Museum of Photographic Arts“Lady Elisabeth’s Rose Garden, Lacock [Abbey], England,” early 1840s, by William Henry Fox Talbot, via Museum of Photographic Arts Commons on flickr (both photos).

Lady Elizabeth Fox-Strangways Feilding was the photographer’s mother.

Lady's Elizabeth's rose garden, 1840s, Museum of Photographic Arts

Talbot was one of the early fathers of photography.  He developed the paper negative and the process of permanently fixing photos on chemically treated paper.

This is the body of light. . . .

— Ronald Johnson, from “BEAM 30: The Garden

The Sunday porch: the Jones

crj00 006Calvert Richard Jones (on the right), with six women, a man, boy, girl and dog, standing and sitting in a colonnaded porch way,” probably Swansea, Wales, ca. 1860, via National Library of Wales Commons on flickr.

Jones was a member of Swansea’s wealthly, landowning elite.  He studied mathematics at Oxford and was ordained as an Anglican priest, but spent much of his time traveling and painting. Like many men and women of his class in the Swansea area from the 1840s to the early 1860s, he was a photography enthusiast. In 1841, he took a daguerreotype that is now the earliest accurately dated photograph in Wales.

The photo may include Mrs. Jones (Portia Smith) and one or more of their three daughters.

Montmartre Cemetery, Paris

Montmartre Cemetery, Sept. 2015, by enclos*ureAnother quick look down.

We were walking along the Rue Caulaincourt bridge over the south end of the cemetery when we spotted this pretty planting arrangement in yellow below.

Cimetière de Montmartre is the third largest of four necropolises built in the early 19th century, just outside the Paris city boundaries.

Montmartre Cemetery glimpse, Sept. 2015, by enclos*ur

It was placed below street level, in an abandoned gypsum quarry, which had previously received the hundreds of bodies of those killed in the riots of the French Revolution.

The entrance is at the end of Rue Rachel, under Rue Caulaincourt.


About two weeks ago, while we were in Washington, D.C., I went to the Phillips Collection to see the exhibition Snapshot: Painters and Photography, Bonnard to Vuillard.

It displays 200 personal photographs taken by 7 post-impressionist painters at the end of the 19th century, using the then-new Kodak handheld camera. Seventy paintings and prints are also shown. The pictures are engrossing, although many are only a few inches tall. It runs until May 6. See it if you can.

On the way down the stairs, I spotted this sculpture in the Hunter Courtyard.

It’s one part of a work called Sk(in).  The other part was hung inside, but, unfortunately, it has been removed.  The artist is A. Balasubramaniam, and you can watch an interesting short video on the full work’s  installation here.  The sculpture “explores the limits of perception.”

It certainly explores the potential of steel mesh.