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Picturing Landscape through Nineteenth-Century Photographic Processes

France Scully Osterman, artist, educator, and lecturer at Scully & Osterman Studio and guest scholar at the George Eastman Museum. In this presentation held on May 6, 2017, at the National Gallery of Art, France Scully Osterman provides an overview of historical photographic processes used to create works in the exhibition East of the Mississippi: Nineteenth-Century American Landscape Photography. Osterman demonstrates how to make cyanotypes and salted paper prints, two popular 19th-century photographic processes. Beginning with coating papers by hand, she prints the light-sensitive papers with collodion negatives, and she then elaborates on the similarities between the salted paper and albumen printing processes and how they were toned. Osterman also shows examples of photographic techniques, including retouching negatives and waxing prints. East of the Mississippi is the first exhibition to focus exclusively on photographs made in the eastern United States during the 19th century. On view from March 12 through July 16, 2017, East of the Mississippi showcases some 175 works—from daguerreotypes and stereographs to albumen prints and cyanotypes—as well as several photographers whose efforts have often gone unheralded. This program is made possible by the James D. and Kathryn K. Steele Fund for Photography.