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Friday, June 1 • 10:30am - 11:00am
(Photographic Materials) Color Records: Wood’s Diffraction Process of Color Photography

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In 1899 American physicist Robert W. Wood invented a new three-color photographic process utilizing diffraction gratings of different grove spacing. While the process’s drawbacks, including the need for a special viewer, relegated it to the laboratory, the finished plates had the interesting property of displaying natural color without the use of pigments or dyes. The George Eastman Museum collection contains several plates from the inception of Wood’s process and more than a dozen from the brief period of commercialization in the first decade of the 20th century. For this project the history of the process was documented and variations within were recorded using photomicrography. A lens system based on original viewing apparatus was then constructed to enable the viewing and photo-documentation of all the images. As the plates rely solely on the diffraction of white light to produce color, the images captured appear essentially as they did when produced over 100 years ago.

avatar for Zach Long

Zach Long

Conservator, George Eastman Museum
Zach Long is Assistant Conservator at the Kay R. Whitmore Conservation Center at the George Eastman Museum. He holds a Master of Arts and Certificate of Advanced Study in Art Conservation from SUNY Buffalo State and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photographic Illustration from the Rochester... Read More →

Friday June 1, 2018 10:30am - 11:00am MDT
Hunters Creek Meeting Room Marriott Marquis Houston