New York’s Metropolitan Museum is mounting a show of Julia Margaret Cameron’s 19th Century photography. Cameron got her first camera at 48 years old and began taking celebrity portraits
Today Cameron’s brooding originality, widely acknowledged, has resulted in six-figure sale prices for her work and a new, 32-work exhibition of her photos that starts Monday at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. […]
Much of Cameron’s distinction as a photographer comes from her soft-focused, close-cropped style. Unlike many of her contemporaries, she didn’t strive for absolute clarity and detail; she would have her subjects sit for long exposures, allowing the camera to pick up their slight movements. “She was willing to sacrifice certain details to capture the spirit or soul of the person,” says Malcolm Daniel, the show’s curator, “So unlike any other photographer of the period.”
At auction, an 1866 Cameron photo of Kate Keown, her neighbor, went for $249,069 at Sotheby’s in London in 2001; one of Herschel sold for $108,000 at Phillips de Pury in New York in 2006. In December, Sotheby’s in London will offer an album of Cameron’s photographs, which she compiled for her nephew in 1869. The auction house has set the sale estimate at $391,000 to $547,000.
Blurry Focus, Clear Success (Wall Street Journal)