The book accompanies an exhibition to be held at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh from 27 May to 1 October 2017 before touring internationallySumptuous, high-quality, full-colour platesThis is one of the world’s most important collections of early photographyFeaturing numerous views of Edinburgh, its development and its inhabitants Pioneering Edinburgh photographers David Octavius Hill (1802-1870) and Robert Adamson (1821-1848) together formed one of the most famous partnerships in the history of photography. Producing highly skilled photographs just four years after the new medium was announced to the world in 1839, their images of people, buildings and scenes in and around Edinburgh offer a fascinating glimpse into 1840s Scotland. Their much-loved prints of the Newhaven fisherfolk are among the first images of social documentary photography. In the space of four and a half years Hill and Adamson produced several thousand prints encompassing landscapes, architectural views, tableaux vivants from Scottish literature and an impressive suite of portraits featuring key members of Edinburgh society. Anne M. Lyden, International Photography Curator at the National Galleries of Scotland, discusses the dynamic dispute that brought these two men together and reveals their perfect chemistry as the first professional partnership in Scottish photography. Illustrated with around 100 masterpieces from the Galleries’ unique, vast collection of the duo’s ground-breaking work.
This is a celebration of the 1844-48 partnership between engineer Robert Adamson and painter David Octavius Hill, both innovative photographers who documented Victorian Edinburgh for the first time in early calotypes of the city and its inhabitants.
– Financial Times
The cream of Edinburgh is here, from George Bell, founder of the Ragged Schools, to the publisher John Blackie (looking bilious). The landscapes of Edinburgh are evocative and the celebrated Newhaven series of the fishing community, considered the world’s first documentary photographs, still shines.
– The Times
This exhibition explores the partnership of David Octavius Hill (1802-1870) and Robert Adamson (1821-1848)… showcasing images that are among the first examples of social documentary in the world of photography.
– Arts Agenda