Burning with Desire: The Conception of Photography
In an 1828 letter to his partner Nicephore Niepce, Louis Daguerre wrote, "I am burning with desire to see your experiments from nature." In this book, Geoffrey Batchen analyzes the desire to photograph as it emerged within the philosophical and scientific milieus that preceded the actual invention of photography. Recent accounts of photography's identity tend to divide between the postmodern view that all identity is determined by context and a formalist effort to define the fundamental characteristics of photography as a medium. Batchen critiques both approaches by way of a detailed discussion of photography's conception in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. In this refiguring of the traditional story of photography's origins, Batchen examines the output of the various nominees for "first photographer, " then incorporates this information into a mode of historical criticism informed by the work of Michel Foucault and Jacques Derrida. The result is a way of thinking about photography that persuasively accords with the medium's undeniable conceptual, political, and historical complexity.
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IMAGES OF NATURE
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Account aesthetic Allan Sekula appear argues artist Beaumont Newhall Calotype camera lucida camera obscura chemistry claimed Claude Claude Glass Coleridge conception copy criticism culture Daguerre Daguerre's daguerreotype Davy's described desire to photograph Diorama discourse discovery early eighteenth engraving Essays example Fox Talbot French Gernsheim Gilpin glass Harmant Hippolyte Bayard History of Photography Humphry Davy idea of photography Invention of Photography inventor Jacques Derrida John Krauss landscape Larry Schaaf light London Louis Daguerre means metaphor Michel Foucault mirror modern Morse Museum Newhall Nicephore Niepce Niepce's nineteenth century objects Origins of Photography painting paper Paris philosophy Photogenic Drawing photogra photographic experiments photographic process Photography New York photography's identity photography's origins pictorial picturesque portrait positive postmodern produced proto-photographers reference representation reproduced Samuel Morse Science silver space Szarkowski Tagg theory thing thinking tion trans University Press Victor Burgin Wedgwood words writing