A White House on Paradise Street

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A White House on Paradise Street

June 17 @ 12:00 pm - August 19 @ 5:00 pm

A White House on Paradise Street

Jo Gane in collaboration with Pete James and Leon Trimble

This exhibition is inspired by what may be the first Daguerreotype image made in Birmingham, and potentially the first image made in England using the Daguerreotype process (a process invented in 1839 by Louis Daguerre, using silver plated copper). Now missing, the image is said to have depicted a White House on Paradise Street and was made by Birmingham based scientist, artist, lecturer and patent agent George Shaw in the Summer of 1839.

This exhibition presents a collaborative attempt to re-imagine the creation of the missing image, led by photographic artist and BOM Fellow Jo Gane in collaboration with two other BOM Fellows – photographic historian Pete James and digital artist Leon Trimble.

In response to research, A White House on Paradise Street places small camera devices around the city in locations relevant to key moments and events in the early history of photography in Birmingham. The project explores the City’s role in the development of photography, affectionately described as the ‘midwife to the birth of photography’ (The Birmingham Daily Mail, January 1880) in the 19th Century.

Devices have been constructed using historic techniques in mahogany by master cabinetmaker Jamie Hubbard, to resemble the Wolcott Daguerreotype camera patented in 1840. The cameras have been modified through the addition of Raspberry Pi micro-computers, making them able to live-stream images from inside the back of the cameras into the gallery space and online.

The live streams project soft, indistinct images reminiscent of earlier attempts to produce photographic images. Acting as time machines, the devices create images of a blurry digital landscape, inspired by fragments of the past.

Alongside the live stream on show in the gallery will be a series of new Daguerreotype images inspired by what may have been visible in Shaw’s original image.

This project is part of an exciting season of events and activities around the early history of photography in Birmingham. For more details, visit www.developedinbirmingham.com

Join us for the Preview on Friday June 16th from 5pm




June 17 @ 12:00 pm
August 19 @ 5:00 pm
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