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The Nicephore Files

June 30, 2010

In the grass

I wanted to call this post The Aix Files, but it is about Chalon-sur-Soane which isn’t even in Provence. It is in Burgundy, which was, at least, a good reason to take my class to a wine tasting. As we were leaving the tasting, a student asked me to take a picture of this “cute couple kissing in the grass”.

The class also ended up lying around in the grass.

Sleeping in the grass.

Some of us photographed the bocce tournament.

Bocce in the park

Yes, there is a reason to go to Chalon in addition to general mellowness. There is the Nicephore Niepce Museum. I wanted to go there to learn how to pronounce” Niepce”. It turns out that it rhymes with “sleeps”, which is very appropriate.

Sleeping on the train

Back to the Niepce Museum– it is a great place.

Outside the Niepce Museum

Nicephore Niepce was the first person to make a picture that lasted long enough to illustrate that he was the first person to make a picture that lasted. I’m not really sure how long his photos lasted, as the museum didn’t have a lot of pictures by Niepce. We are talking about photographs from 1827 so you can’t expect a major exhibit from that period when photography wasn’t officially invented until 1839. What the museum did have were many great old cameras and collections of other questionable photo stuff, like a glass case of probably non-functioning point and shoot 35mm cameras that looked like a display from a Goodwill thrift store.

Possibly Niepce's diaphragm

Possibly the first color camera

They did have three great contemporary photography shows at the museum. The best of which was by Mac Adams.

Mac Adams exhibit

The exhibits were mostly in French so I’m not really sure what was being explained.

Tomorrow is our student critique of pictures from our work in southern France. I’m planning to collect some interesting images for the next post.

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