For his most recent project, French photography collector and editor Thomas Sauvin has been spending his time digging though illegal silver recycling centers in Beijing. He’s doing this because buried within piles of X-Rays and CD-ROMs are hidden millions of discarded film negatives that Sauvin is intent on preserving. Read more…
Posts Tagged ‘archive’
Argentinian photographer Daniel Mordzinski, know for his work photographing literary giants, is accusing famous French newspaper Le Monde of trashing 27 years of his work without warning. Boxes worth of negatives and slides were allegedly thrown away when the photographer’s office at the newspaper was cleaned out without notice earlier this month. Read more…
Over the past 4 years the New York City Department of Records has been compiling an online database made up of rare photographs of “the greatest city on earth,” and now that database is available to the public. The compilation consists of over 870,000 photos ranging in subject matter from landmarks to crime scenes put together from a Municipal Archives collection of over 2.2 million photos. Read more…
Albert Kahn was a wealthy French banker who launched a project in the early 1909 that aimed to create a photographic record of the world. The first commercially successful color photography process, Autochrome Lumière, had just arrived two years earlier, and Kahn decided to use the medium to both document human life and to promote peace. He sent out an army of photographers to 50 different countries, amassing 72,000 photos and 100 hours (183,000 meters) of film that became one of the most important collections of images in human history.
During his lifetime, MIT engineer and businessman Nick DeWolf founded the giant electronic testing company Teradyne and designed more than 300 semiconductor and electronic test systems. In his spare time he was also an avid photography enthusiast, carrying a camera with him at all times. After his death, his son-in-law Steve Lundeen began working to archive and share the enormous body of work. Lundeen is currently publishing the original sets of photographs to Flickr at a rate of 20-50 images per day, and has already uploaded a whopping 50,000 photographs. You can follow along and enjoy the time-travelling pre-digital stream of images by following the Nick DeWolf Photo Archive’s photostream.
According to a survey conducted for SanDisk, 64% of adults in the US wouldn’t consider destroying their photo collections for $1 million. At the same time, the general public probably doesn’t spend nearly enough time and money ensuring the safety of those same photos. Well, SanDisk announced a new product today designed to help photos last at least as long as their owners do. It’s called the “Memory Vault”, and is a rugged flash drive that has the proven ability to preserve data uncorrupted — a big problem for ordinary hard drives — for up to 100 years. 8GB of storage will cost you $50, while 16GB is priced at $80.
SanDisk Memory Vault [SanDisk]
There’s a good chance the digital photos you’ve stored on hard drives and DVDs won’t outlive you, but what if there was a disc that could last forever? M-Disc, short for Millenial Disc, is a new type of disc that doesn’t suffer from natural decay and degradation like existing disc technologies, allowing you to store data safely for somewhere between “1000 years” and “forever”.
Existing disc technologies write data using an organic dye layer that begins to experience “data rot” immediately after it’s written, causing the disc to become unreadable after a certain amount of time. The M-Disc, on the other hand, actually carves your data into “rock-like materials” that are known to last for centuries, meaning there’s no data rot. Apparently NASA uses the discs to store data. Hopefully it becomes available and affordable soon…
It seems like everyone has access to some kind of camera these days, but will the digital images captured survive long enough to become part of the historical record of our time for future generations? John Naughton at The Guardian writes,
[...] while digital technology has generally been very good for photography as a mass medium, it has also made the resulting imagery much more fragile and impermanent. Of the billions of photographs taken every year, the vast majority exist only as digital files on camera memory cards or on the hard drives of PCs and servers in the internet “cloud”. In theory – given the right back-up regimes and long-term organisational arrangements – this means that they could, theoretically, endure for a long time. In practice, given the vulnerability of storage technology (all hard disks fail, eventually), the pace at which computing kit becomes obsolete and storage formats change, and the fact that most people’s Facebook accounts die with them, the likelihood is that most of those billions of photographs will not long survive those who took them.
That’s a startling thought — while it’s true that digital photos can last for quite some time if you’re tech-savvy enough to preserve them well, how many people in the general population actually do so? For the ordinary photo-taker, making a print will likely last much longer than their haphazard — or non-existant — backups.
Stick your pics in a proper family album [The Guardian]
If you’ve got boxes of old prints and family photos you’d like to salvage from those awful sticky photo album pages, SnapHaven will scan them for free. For a limited time, the photo storage and backup service is offering free unlimited scans for customers with an active membership — though you’ll have to pay to ship your own prints.
SnapHaven is still the only dedicated photo backup and storage site. They also offer services for making prints, photo books, and other photo gift accessories.
SnapHaven originally launched last December, but has just re-launched with new membership options. Previously, the company had plans based on upload limits, but membership is now available at a yearly flat rate, starting at $49.99. Now, rather than paying more for more space, annual memberships are straightforward and include unlimited photo backup, protected by the company’s 99 year lifetime guarantee. SnapHaven also assures that even if the yearly membership is not renewed, customers can still have full access to the photos for viewing, printing, sharing, and downloading.
Yale University has announced the acquisition of American photographer Lee Friedlander‘s archive, and 2,000 prints from his collection. The joint acquisition by Yale’s Art Gallery and Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library involves over 40,000 rolls of film and contact sheets by the prolific photographer.
So far, 2010 has been a year of big photographic acquisitions. Just over a month ago, billionaire Michael Dell’s investment firm purchased Magnum’s entire press print archive, which was then relocated to the University of Texas at Austin.