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Thread: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

  1. #11
    Do or do not. There is no try.
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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    I just left the exhibit and will return again tomorrow. The light levels didn't strike me as excessively low, but it sure wasn't full daylight. It helped, I think, that today was Monday and it wasn't very busy at all so we could get right up the the prints for better viewing. I think many of the prints would have looked dark even in brighter lighting. A very impressive exhibit, well worth the drive down from Boston and the cost of the hotel.

  2. #12
    Richard Johnson
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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Maybe we could dialate or drug ourselves for more light gathering at these elite venues?

  3. #13
    Tracy Storer's Avatar
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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Quote Originally Posted by jonbrisbincreative View Post
    YouTube video on Strand from @theartofphotography:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv03l46FSvU
    I can't BELIEVE this guy spent 1/4 or 1/3 of the time yakking about his sponsors, and a 10 minute glare-ridden shot of him flipping through an exhibition catalog. Strand deserves better.
    Tracy Storer
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  4. #14

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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    I saw the Strand exhibit a couple of weeks ago. Yes, the light levels were low, but it was wonderful to be able to see so many of his original prints in one space. I suppose I was captivated more by the early work than the later work. Still, Strand built an amazing life in photography, as shown by that exhibit.

    I liked how they showed some of his glass negatives, and the process by which, early in his career, he went from small glass negative, to glass positive, to larger glass? negative in order to make 8x10 contact prints.

  5. #15

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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Yea, this one is better: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dP5YTqqoAqA I have it on DVD and the quality is a lot better than on youtube.

  6. #16

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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    "Extremely sensitive items such as salt prints . . ."

    Would you elaborate on this more? Are properly processed salt prints more sensitive than other prints? If so, why?

    Thanks in advance.

  7. #17

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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Quote Originally Posted by Marco Milazzo View Post
    "Extremely sensitive items such as salt prints . . ."

    Would you elaborate on this more? Are properly processed salt prints more sensitive than other prints? If so, why?
    I should be more specific: salt prints of a "certain vintage..."

    I'm not sure about "modern" applications of the process; perhaps contemporary prints on modern papers, coatings, etc, are more stable. Those from the original period are notoriously sensitive to light, humidity, and environmental contamination.

    Check this out, by J.M. Reilly, from 1980, for more info: http://albumen.conservation-us.org/l...ly/chap11.html

    Hope it's helpful.
    jbhogan

  8. #18
    Richard M. Coda
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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    I saw an Edward Weston show at the Metropolitan in NY many years ago, also with low light levels. And much more recently a show at the Phoenix Art Museum, where I complained. I can't imagine "museum hours" (especially since most museums aren't open 7 days a week anymore) harming prints that much. I know paintings are much older and that their pigments are much more "hardy", but the substrates are what kill them. I don't see them toning down the lights on such master paintings, especially when you consider there is only one.
    Photographs by Richard M. Coda
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  9. #19

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    Re: Reactions to the Paul Strand Exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Just last Sunday I was at the Walther Collection show at MOMA in NYC, and wasn't aware of unusually low lighting. This collection consists of 300 photographs from between the wars, i.e. early 1900s through the 1940s, including Strand, Weston, and just about any photographer you can think of who was working during that period. I was looking quite closely at a number of prints, since what I pressed me aside from many of the images themselves was the print quality, the silver papers of that era were wonderful and quite different from modern papers. Lighting did not seem to be an issue.

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