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Theorizing Digital Cultural HeritageA Critical Discourse$
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Fiona Cameron and Sarah Kenderdine

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780262033534

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262033534.001.0001

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Rise and Fall of the Post-Photographic Museum: Technology and the Transformation of Art

Rise and Fall of the Post-Photographic Museum: Technology and the Transformation of Art

Chapter:
(p.18) (p.19) 1 Rise and Fall of the Post-Photographic Museum: Technology and the Transformation of Art
Source:
Theorizing Digital Cultural Heritage
Author(s):

Peter Walsh

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262033534.003.0002

This chapter examines the history of the development of technology as a cultural practice—particularly photography, art, and the modern art museum—in the nineteenth century to show a parallel revolution to the one currently being experienced with the introduction of new media. It considers how photography changed the manner in which art was presented, reproduced, analyzed, and evaluated, and how the introduction of this technology profoundly influenced the everyday practices of museums other than the range of its collecting activities. After discussing the myths and realities of photographic culture, the chapter argues that the “aura” of original art works was a product of the invention and distribution of photographic technologies. Finally, it focuses on the South Kensington Museum (now known as the Victoria and Albert) in London as the prototype of a post-photographic art museum, and the direct inspiration for many that came later, including those in the United States.

Keywords:   South Kensington Museum, photography, art, museums, new media, culture, art museum, history

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