Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly — 1903 (Heft 1)

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PICTORIAL PHOTOGRAPHY:
THE ST. LOUIS EXPOSITION.

PICTORIAL PHOTOGRAPHY having at last won
recognition in recent European Art Exhibitions,
the managers of the St. Louis Exposition have
awakened to the fact that they could no longer ignore
its claims; although, until Mr. Caffin, the art critic
and editor of the American section of The Inter-
national Studio, took up the cudgels for the cause,
the authorities in St. Louis seemed bent upon fol-
lowing the old narrow path. Nor were they entirely
unjustified in their conservatism in view of their lack
of knowledge of what had been accomplished in this medium and the more
than extravagant demands made by Mr. Julius C. Strauss, a well-known pro-
fessional portrait-photographer of St. Louis, who presumed to act as spokes-
man for the photographic pictorialists. No doubt Mr. Strauss was actuated
by what he conceived to be the best interests of photography, and for taking
the initiative is entitled to much credit; but his connection with the modern
pictorial movement has hardly been such as to have given him the knowl-
edge and experience necessary to impress the authorities with the history and
consequent rights of photography as a fine art. Mr. Caffin has covered the
ground so admirably in The International Studio, and represents so thor-
oughly the spirit we stand for, that we feel that we can do no better than
present it to our readers in its entirety. Editor

THE STUDIO has received from Mr. J. C. Strauss, of St. Louis, copy
of a correspondence between himself and Colonel J. A. Ockerson, Chief
of the Department of Liberal Arts of the forthcoming Exposition. The
subject of correspondence is the locale to be assigned for the exhibition of
photographic prints at the Exposition. Shall all photographic prints be con-
sidered in a lump, whatever their character or intention; whether, for example,
they are representations of machinery or of human beings, scientific records
or made with pictorial intent; shall, in fact, all prints of whatever kind be
clubbed into an indiscriminate mass and exhibited alongside the cameras and
photographic materials, in a building that contains a heterogeneous collection
of exhibits, so diverse as plumbing and linen goods, soap, and astronomical
instruments? Or shall the photographic print, whose sole end is to be an
artistic picture,be treated as a separate product of photography and be assigned
a position in the Fine Arts Building, under the same restrictions of having
to be passed upon by an expert jury before admittance as are usual in the case
of oil-paintings, water-colors, and black-and-white work? In a word, is it
to be recognized that some photographers are artists and their prints artistic ?
BEFORE betraying our views on the merits of the controversy, let us
briefly analyze the correspondence. It opens with a letter from Colonel
Ockerson, acknowledging certain communications from Mr. Strauss and
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