Belgian Photographic Literature of the 19th Century. L’édition photographique belge au 19e siècle.

A Bibliography and Census. Bibliographie et recensement.

Steven F. Joseph

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First comprehensive and richly illustrated overview of historical Belgian photographic literature. The development of photography from its roots in 19th-century science gradually transformed book illustration and the dissemination of images. This fully bilingual reference work presents a first comprehensive overview of Belgian photographic literature of the 19th century, both of illustrated books and of scientific publications. It makes a major contribution to academic study in the field, with a corpus composed of 681 entries and, for each title, indicates locations of surviving copies in institutional collections in Belgium and elsewhere. An introductory essay plots the development of photographic publishing in Belgium, making full use of primary and secondary sources. An album of over eighty images draws on the rich iconography of early Belgian photographic literature, most reprinted here for the first time.

Premier bilan complet et illustré de l’édition photographique belge au 19e siècle. L’évolution de la photographie depuis ses origines dans les sciences du 19e siècle a transformé progressivement l’illustration du livre et la diffusion des images. Le présent ouvrage de référence, entièrement bilingue, a pour but de dresser un premier bilan complet de l’édition photographique belge au 19e siècle, tant iconographique que scientifique. Il constitue une importante contribution aux connaissances historiques dans le domaine et se compose d’un corpus de 681 notices, assorties chacune d’un recensement d’exemplaires localisés dans les collections publiques en Belgique comme ailleurs. Une introduction trace l’évolution de l’édition photographique belge, exploitant pleinement des sources primaires et secondaires. Un album de plus de quatre-vingts illustrations puise dans la riche iconographie des débuts de l’édition photographique belge ; la plupart sont reproduites ici pour la première fois.

This publication is GPRC-labeled (Guaranteed Peer-Reviewed Content).
Acknowledgements / Remerciements
Introductory essay / Introduction
From Michiels to Marissiaux: the first half-century of photography and the book in Belgium
De Michiels à Marissiaux : un demi-siècle de photographie dans le livre en Belgique

Bibliography and census / Bibliographie et recensement
Structure and methodology
Structure et méthodologie
Abbreviations / Abréviations
1. Antecedents / Antécédents
2. Illustrated books and periodicals / Livres et périodiques illustrés
3. Specialist periodicals / Périodiques spécialisés
4. Handbooks and applications / Manuels et applications
5. Désiré Van Monckhoven: his work / son oeuvre
6. Semantic miscellany : photography as metaphor / Divers sémantique : la photographie comme métaphore
7. Trade catalogues / Catalogues commerciaux
8. Association belge de Photographie : publications
9. Bulletin de l'Association belge de Photographie : illustrations
Biography and portraiture / Biographie et portraits
Society and photo-journalism / Société et photo-reportage
Science and technology, industry and transport / Sciences et techniques, industrie et transports
Fine and applied arts / Beaux-arts et arts appliqués
Topography and architecture / Topographie et architecture

Historical references / Références historiques

Critical sources: a selective bibliography / Sources critiques : bibliographie sélective
Photography and printing / Photographie et imprimerie
Photography in Belgium 1839-1914 / La photographie en Belgique 1839-1914


Subject index / Index thématique

Name index / Index des noms propres

Bulletin de l'Association belge de Photographie, 1874-1900 : index of photographers and printers / index des photographes et des imprimeurs

Format: Monograph - ebook

ISBN: 9789461661920

Publication: December 15, 2015

Languages: English | French

Stock item number: 106088

Steven F. Joseph is a photo-historian and Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society. His research areas include early photography in Belgium and the application of photography to printing and book illustration.

Steven F. Joseph est historien de la photographie et Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society. Ses recherches portent sur les débuts de la photographie en Belgique et l'application de la photographie à l'imprimerie et à l'illustration de livres.

One does not know what to admire most in a book that could have been horribly dull and dry but which is not, thanks to the clever information management of the author and the exemplary layout of the publisher. The introductory essay provides the reader with basic historical and technical knowledge, while remaining extremely modest on its scope and stakes. The ambition of Steven F. Joseph is in the very first place to describe, not to interpret. The subsequent sections display a similar modesty. 'The purpose of the following bibliography and census', the author remarks, 'is to present an in-depth survey of Belgian photographic literature from the 19th century. It is thus an initial and indispensable step towards a qualitative and quantitative study of sources, enabling firm conclusions to be drawn as to the phenomenon of photographic illustration, the economic development of photographic publishing and its technology in Belgium up to 1900'. These words are too modest. A book like this is much more than the first step towards a quantitative analysis. One may even wonder whether there will ever exist a second attempt to describe the same corpus with the same degree of precision and completeness.
Jan Baetens, History of Photography, 40:4, 454-456,