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Captured: Russia in Color from 1909-1912

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Posted

Hard as it may be to believe, this photo was taken 100 years ago:

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The US Library of Congress houses a collection of remarkable color photographs taken throughout the Russian Empire between 1909 and 1912 by Sergei Prokudin-Gorskii. For each color scene, he took three monochrome images through red, green and blue filters in quick succession. When the images, suitably filtered, are recombined, full color images are produced.

The quality of these images seems at odds with their age. But clearly, what has changed in photographic technology in the last 100 years is the ease with which we can produce quality color images, not the capacity to do so.

Another striking feature, is the lack of evidence in these photos for the political unrest that would shortly unleash outright revolution (hardly surprising: Prokudin-Gorskii's project was sponsored by Tsar Nicholas II). In effect, these photographs were produced as propaganda. Their quality and the use of the very latest techniques was presumably all aimed at maximising the propaganda effect.

p

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Posted

It's an incredible collection, (indeed, unique) well worth a look. I saw this collection a few years ago, and have been amazed ever since.

Dave

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