Thursday, 20 January 2011

Bite 42: Louis Daguerre - Boulevard du Temple, c. 1838

Boulevard du Temple, c. 1838
This is probably the first portrait photograph ever taken - albeit somewhat unintentionally. During a several-minute-long exposure Louis Daguerre, who is seen as a co-inventor of the photographic medium, has captured a pedestrian who has stopped to have his shoes shined. 

No other subject or vehicle shows up. Only this anonymous figure was still long enough to become a silhouette on the light sensitive surface of the daguerreotype - a technology which was yet to be announced to the world.

With a mundane activity he has unwittingly made photographic history.