Galerie Livet in France Exhibits Prints from the Birth of Photography, Mid 19th Century

Man from Tangier, 1859, by Gustave de Beaucorps<br />Photograph: Galerie Livet
Most of us dabble in frivolous use of cell phone and digital cameras on the regular, but do we ever stop and think about the birth of photography?

A unique photographic exhibit features prints from the early years of photography, before 1910. People back then didn't have instant access to a camera the way we do. There was no flash technology so sitting still for a few minutes was required at times. Photography was even used to document eerie subjects like the dead so they could live on in their family's memories.

The exhibit is titled "Trois ou quatre choses que je sais d'elle, la photographie (Three or Four Things I Know about Photography)" and continues until August 2, 2008 at the Galerie Livet, a small museum located in the village of Saint-Germain-le-Vasson in Normandy, France.

For a sneak peak without having to step foot in France, you can view the Guardian Weekly's online slideshow of 11 prints from the photographic exhibit at Galerie Livet. I've used this portrait of a Tangier man to illustrate this post because it's a classic example of how the photographic medium was also used as a tool in the field of "ethnic" studies. The Guardian Weekly article grossly points out how the "sense of empathy is so strong [for the subject] that it quite surpasses conventional ethnic studies."

PHOTO: Man from Tangier, 1859, by Gustave de Beaucorps, Galerie Livet

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