Art/ Collection/ Art Object

[Carte-de-Visite Album of Famous Personages]

Artist:
Giulio Rossi (Italian)
Artist:
Charles DeForest Fredricks (American, 1823–1894)
Artist:
Renowden
Artist:
Appleton (American)
Artist:
Cornelius Jabez Hughes (British, 1819–1884)
Artist:
Jeremiah Gurney (American, 1812–1895 Coxsackie, New York)
Artist:
Fritz Luckhardt (Austrian, 1843–1894)
Artist:
London Stereoscopic and Photographic Company (British)
Artist:
Russell and Sons (British)
Artist:
Hills and Saunders (British, active 1856–95)
Artist:
William Downey (British, born 1828)
Artist:
Elliott and Fry (British, London)
Date:
1860s–70s
Medium:
Albumen silver prints
Classification:
Albums
Credit Line:
Jefferson R. Burdick Bequest, 1969
Accession Number:
69.639.1
Not on view
The inexpensive eight-at-a-time method of making cartes de visite made it easy and inviting to give one's own portrait to friends and family and to collect theirs, along with pictures of notable public figures. This album is filled with portraits of the British royal family, beginning with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and including, at the left of this spread, Alexandra, Princess of Wales, whose personal photo-collage album is displayed in the center of this room. Along with portraits of other European royalty, this album contains cartes of Dr. Livingstone, Garibaldi, Mark Twain, and Tom Thumb.

Responding to the immense popularity of carte-de-visite collecting, albums were manufactured with pre-cut windows and slots through which one could insert standard size cartes. Typically, such albums featured embossed decoration or simple decorative lines, as in this example, to frame the photographs.
Harvey Brewer

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Playing with Pictures: The Art of Victorian Photocollage," February 2, 2010–May 9, 2010.

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