Early Photographic Accounts at the Prima Riunione degli Scienziati Italiani (Pisa, 1839)

Francesca Strobino (De Montfort University, National Science and Media Museum)

Abstract

This paper sheds light on a pivotal moment in early photography and its connection to science, re-contextualising some of the surviving accounts on the medium in nineteenth-century Italy. The first meeting of the Italian Scientific Association (Pisa, 1839) provides an excellent case study to investigate how Italian natural philosophers approached the invention focusing on the chemical and optical phenomena showing on the surface of the daguerreotype plate rather than the image it was carrying. By investigating the accounts presented at the scientific meeting, I argue for a re-think of our approach to early photography in Italy from a material and cultural perspective that extends beyond photographic images or apparatus.

DOI: 10.4424/rsf2021-11

Keywords

Puliti, Tito; Daguerreotype; Scientific photography; Colored metals; Electricity; Italian Scientific Association; Tuscany.

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