Early 1900s in Colour

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In the early part of the 20th century French-Jewish capitalist Albert Kahn set about to collect a photographic record of the world, the images were held in an ‘Archive of the Planet’. Before the 1929 stock market crash he was able to amass a collection of 180,000 metres of b/w film and more than 72,000 autochrome plates, the first industrial process for true colour photography

www.albert-kahn.fr/english/

Autochrome was the first industrial process for true colour photography. When the Lumière brothers launched it commercially in June 1907, it was a photograhic revolution – black and white came to life in colour. Autochromes consist of fine layers of microscopic grains of potato starch dyed either red-orange, green or violet blue combined with black carbon particles, spread over a glass plate where it is combined with a black and white photographic emulsion. All colours can be reproduced from three primary colours.

www.albertkahn.co.uk

A few photos from the collection.

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Portraits

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Algeria

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Dahomey – now Benin

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Bosnia

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Brasil

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