The simultaneous advent of photography in Britain and France in the 19th century makes for a fascinating study of the two countries' early photographic explorations in a new exhibition at the Boston MFA titled 'Silver, Salt, and Sunlight: Early Photography in Britain and France.'
During this period, artists slowly expanded on the visual language that painting and sculpture had established, first applying their new medium to landscapes and portraiture and then exploring the camera's unique accuracy and instantaneous capabilities. Gustave Le Gray's 'Cloudy Sky--The Mediterranean with Mount Agde' approaches the grandeur of a Turner landscape without the exaggerated colors, and Nadar's 'The Apostle Preacher Jean Journet' is all the more breathtaking for proving that men like Zurbarán's 'St. Francis of Assisi' really exist.
According to the museum, the exhibition "will feature some of the Museum's great early rarities, as well as the debut of the MFA’s recent acquisition an 1873 photograph by Alice in Wonderland author Lewis Carroll."
'Silver, Salt, and Sunlight: Early Photography in Britain and France' will be on display February 7–August 19, 2012 at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston MA 02115.