The history of photography as seen through the Spira collection

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Aperture, 2001 - Photography - 231 pages
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Photography, given its extraordinary ability to record human experience and to change the way in which people see themselves, has significantly impacted modern history. "The History of Photography as Seen Through the Spira Collection" is a comprehensive look at the prehistory, history, and contemporary state of photography through the prism of one of the most important private collections of photographic equipment, images, books, and ephemera ever assembled. This richly illustrated book is a testament to the creativity and ingenuity of the human mind.
S. F. Spira, an influential member of the international photography community and founder of Spiratone (until the mid-1980s America's foremost supplier of innovative photographic accessories), has, with his wife Marilyn, collected more than twenty thousand individual objects relating to the history of photography--a collection of unusual substance and depth, including many rare items not duplicated amongst the holdings of any museum in the United States. The Spira Collection is remarkable in that it clearly illustrates the evolution of photographic technologies and the complex relationships between photography and other disciplines such as painting, history, and the sciences.
Included are the comprehensive chapters covering the prehistory of photography, dagguerrian and wet-plate photography, the motion picture, the development of color processes, and, finally, digital photography. While particular focus is given to historic technical achievements and pioneering advances in design, photo-related objects including period books, magazines, cartoons, and toys add perspective and dimension to this scholarly but accessible volume.
An indispensable resource for collectors, photographers, and researchers alike, "The History of Photography as Seen Through the Spira Collection" is based on Spira's own writings and collection, and is co-authored with Eaton S. Lothrop, Jr., eminent photo historian and author of "A Century of Cameras," and Jonathan B. Spira, one of the first photo historians to conduct in-depth research on electronic and digital photography.

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The history of photography as seen through the Spira collection

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The founder of Spiratone, a company that once supplied photographic accessories, S.F. (Fred) Spira is also well known for his extensive collection of photographic equipment. This volume, which ... Read full review


Foreword by Jonathan B Spira
The Diorama
The Daguerreotype Process
Color on and in Daguerreotypes
Daguerreotype Presentation and Display
In the Field
The Multiplied Image
Viewing and Displaying Cartes and Cabinets
The AllSeeing Eye Diversity in the Camera
Stamps and Photography
The Leica and Its Imitators
mm Stereo Cameras
The Magic Lantern
The Spirograph
The First Instant Picture
The StillVideo Camera

The College Album
Stereo Viewers
The RollFilm Revolution
The Compatibility Conundrum
Appreciation by Bernard Danis

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