Tag Search

Type a search term

Advanced Search

BECK, Henri. Vues d’Athènes et de ses Monuments, Photographies d’après Nature, Berlin - London, A. Asher & Co., 1868.

Henri Beck was the creator of some of the earliest photographs of Athenian monuments, shortly after the mid-19th century. The excavation and restoration of several sites had begun, and in some cases, important progress had already been made. The photographs of Beck, together with the earlier ones of J. Robertson (1854) and those of W. J. Stilman (1870), constitute an invaluable source on the history of Athenian monuments and ruins.

Calotypy, the early photographic technique used by Beck, was quite adequate for archaeological pictures but had some shortcomings with regard to capturing the surroundings. As exposure time spanned several hours, shots could not include people in movement; consequently, the city looked empty and deserted. In some rare cases Beck hired people to pose before the monuments; on the whole however, photographers of that period were mainly interested in monuments and not in human figures.

Written by Ioli Vingopoulou

Subjects (52)