Francis Frith (British, 1822-1898)
The Mosque of the Emeer Akhoor, Cairo, 1858. Signed and dated "Frith..." in the negative l.r., titled on the pre-printed mount. Albumen silver print mounted to heavyweight paper, image/sheet size 19 1/4 x 15 3/8 in. (48.8 x 39.0 cm), unmatted, unframed.
Condition: Creases in l.r. and u.r. corners.
Provenance: A private Massachusetts collection.
N.B. Francis Frith turned to photography in the early 1850s, and in 1856 made his first trip to Egypt, traveling up the Nile from Cairo to Abu Simbel, and photographing ancient monuments and locations using a stereoscopic camera and two large format cameras with different negative sizes (8 x 10 and 16 x 20 inches). Despite the challenging environmental conditions, Frith succeeded in producing his arresting images using a portable darkroom with wet-plate collodion on glass negatives. His use of three negative formats demonstrates the commercial nature of his enterprise and the high demand in mid-19th century England for pictorial evidence of Middle Eastern subjects.
The successful sale of Frith's views financed his next trip to Palestine, Syria, and Egypt in late 1857, and in the summer of 1859, he returned to Egypt, traveling up the Nile to the Fifth Cataract, and venturing further south than any other photographer before him. Settling back in Britain, he opened his own firm in Reigate, Surrey, near London, to publish and sell his images, as well as the work of other photographers.
Mount measures 28 3/8 x 21 in. (72.0 x 53.2 cm). Pale fox marks and water stain or similar l.l. corner of mount.
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