The Museum Of Photography : 20 Years Steven And Mary Degenaro
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Over the course of 20 years Steven and Mary DeGenaro accumulated a sizeable collection of postmortem portraits from estate sales, auctions and other collectors. Donated by Steve DeGenaro between 2010 and 2012, these images are now a permanent collection of the California Museum of Photography. Postmortem portraiture is the practice of photography of the recently deceased. In the late 19th century postmortem photography became quite popular and remained so throughout the 20th century. The traditions and styles of postmortem photography is the main focus of the exhibit BUT NOT FORGOTTEN. Selected photographs for the exhibit were organized and displayed in similar groups and on several walls and in freestanding cases throughout the third floor of the museum. A brief description, name of photographer (if known), date (if known) and print process / format were displayed on the wall and preceded each group of images. AT REST, represents the traditions and compositional styles that were common in early postmortem photographs. OUT OF THE CASE, INTO THE CASKET focuses on the first paper based photographs, in addition to the new styles in composition. PERSONAL DETAILS shows the viewer a group of images with a personal touch and POSTMORTEMS ABROAD depicts images from Latin America and Europe.
The earliest dated images of the exhibit are the daguerreotype, ambrotype, and tintypes which are displayed in a group titled AT REST. Although most of the images in this group are of unknown