Group f/64 Manifesto The name of this Group is derived from a diaphragm number of the photographic lens. It signifies to a large extent the qualities of clearness and definition of the photographic image which is an important element in the work of members of this Group. The chief object of the Group is to present in frequent shows what it considers the best contemporary photography of the West; in addition to the showing of the work of its members, it will include prints from other photographers who evidence tendencies in their work similar to that of the Group. Group f/64 is not pretending to cover the entire of photography or to indicate through its selection of members any deprecating opinion of the photographers who are not included in its shows. There are great number of serious workers in photography whose style and technique does not relate to the metier of the Group. Group f/64 limits its members and invitational names to those workers who are strivin…
The “full acceptance” of reality is the method and goal of
the photographer, observed Paul Strand. However, full objectivity has to be something
different from a passive receptivity but must emerge from an active and
vigilant attitude that requires the photographer’s control of his subject. Or
rather, it requires the coming together of subject and object in the
intervening space of the photograph, synthesizing and perhaps transcending both,
a mediating space, both familiar and unusual, made of masses and voids, light
and shadows, made of the equivalence of presence and absence, of correspondences of vision and forms in the
world, of the coalescence of equivalent forms in a frame, of a spatialized time and a
space of gradually superposed
John Thomson (1837-1921) 'Street Life in London England, 1877-8 Carbon print (woodburytype) Victoria and Albert Museum
The Photographs In the late 1870s Thomson embarked on his most well known project, photographing the lives the people living on the streets of London.
'Street Life in London' was published in twelve instalments throughout 1877 and the beginning of 1878. Three of Thomson's photographs appeared in each edition with three stories mainly written by the journalist Adolphe Smith, who held reformist views and worked as the official interpreter for the TUC from 1886 to 1905.
With social problems gaining increased attention in the 1870s through the work of such men as Charles Dickens and the founder of homes for destitute children, Dr Barnado, these vignettes of survival among the poor proved popular with the public. The hopes and aspirations, values and needs of those portrayed were recognisable to the readers of other classes. The photographs added a gr…