Images from photography’s early years have a peculiar temporality. They evoke a seemingly remote past through old-fashioned clothing and poses, as well as often unfamiliar customs and geographies. But they also deliver the past to us in a very immediate and familiar way. Through photography, the past is always with us — it is ‘ever present’.
This exhibition, drawn from the Gallery’s historical collections, presents works by unknown nineteenth-century photographers alongside iconic images by some of the masters of the twentieth century, such as Walker Evans, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Diane Arbus.
The images in ‘Ever Present’ suggest the multiple stories comprising the history of photography in the pre-digital era.