William Henry Fox Talbot (British, Dorset 1800–1877 Lacock)
before March 22, 1844
Salted paper print from paper negative
Image: 13.3 x 18 cm (5 1/4 x 7 1/16 in. )
Gilman Collection, Gift of The Howard Gilman Foundation, 2005
Not on view
An exceptional student first at Harrow and later at Cambridge, Talbot was a man of great learning and broad interests. Mathematics, astronomy, physics, botany, chemistry, Egyptology, philology, and the classics were all within the scope of his investigative appetite. The Philosophical Magazine, Miscellanies of Science, Botanische Schriften, Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians, Philological Essays, Poetae Minores Graeci, and Lanzi's Storia pittorica dell'Italia are among the volumes represented in this photograph-truly an intellectual self-portrait. The image appeared as plate 8 in The Pencil of Nature. Paradoxically, A Scene in a Library was taken out of doors, where the light was stronger.
Inscription: Inscribed in ink, verso BL: "L A 8"
[Nina Rosenwald]; Gilman Paper Company Collection, New York, November 10, 1978
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Johnson Gallery, Selections from the Collection 41a".
Museum of Modern Art, New York. "From the Gilman Collection: Photographs Preserved in Ink," November 15, 1984–February 26, 1985.
Palais de Tokyo, Paris. "Procédés, Procédés," October 7, 1987–November 30, 1987.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Pencil of Nature," January 24, 1989–April 9, 1989.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Waking Dream: Photography's First Century, Selections from the Gilman Paper Company Collection," May 25, 1993–July 4, 1993.
Edinburgh International Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland. "The Waking Dream: Photography's First Century, Selections from the Gilman Paper Company Collection," August 7, 1993–October 2, 1993.
National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. "The Waking Dream: Photography's First Century, Selections from the Gilman Paper Company Collection," June 19, 1994–September 11, 1994.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Johnson Gallery, Selections from the Collection 42," January 10, 2006–April 23, 2006.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Framing a Century: Master Photographers, 1840–1940," June 3, 2008–September 1, 2008.
Talbot, William Henry Fox. The Pencil of Nature. London: Longman, Brown, Green and Longmans, 1844–46. Plate VIII.
Apraxine, Pierre. Photographs from the Collection of the Gilman Paper Company. Reeds Springs, Mo.: White Oak Press, 1985. frontispiece.
Hambourg, Maria Morris, Pierre Apraxine, Malcolm Daniel, Virginia Heckert, and Jeff L. Rosenheim. The Waking Dream: Photography's First Century, Selections from the Gilman Paper Company Collection. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1993. p. 266.
Schaaf, Larry J. The Photographic Art of William Henry Fox Talbot. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000. p.190.
Schaaf, Larry J. William Henry Fox Talbot Catalogue Raisonné, Oxford: Bodleian Libraries, 2017. http://foxtalbot.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/.