Julia Margaret Cameron

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As the age of fifty approached, a time when nineteenth-century women generally decided they had completed the better part of their life’s work and could sit back to enjoy time with family and friends, and perhaps a little travel, Julia Margaret Cameron bucked the system. Thanks to either her son or daughter (versions conflict) who bought her a camera, in the early 1860s she became consumed with enthusiasm for the new art of photography and achieved personal and professional success as a portrait photographer. She learned the intricacies of the necessary chemicals, how to print on glass, pose her subjects. She invited or commanded her relatives, friends, and servants to sit for the lengthy sessions needed to produce each endeavor.

The parameters of British society were clearly defined: she was related to a well-know literary and diplomatic family and a great aunt of Virginia Woolf. Her supportive, elderly husband was a former governor of the Bahamas, her friends numbered such luminaries as Alfred Lord Tennyson and Thomas Carlisle. Novelist and dramatist George du Maurier, in a highly mixed compliment wrote, “She is without exception the greatest character I ever met; I find her delightful but don’t think she would suit as a permanent next door neighbour (sic.) for the next 30 years or so unless one could now and then get away.”

The small book includes brief profiles by Virginia Woolf and Roger Fry, an introduction by Tristram Powell, and fifty plates. It complements an exhibit at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles.

Reviewed By:

Author Julia Margaret Cameron • Virginia Woolf • Roger Fry • Tristram Powell, Introduction
Star Count /5
Format Trade
Page Count 192 pages
Publisher J. Paul Getty Museum
Publish Date 2018-Oct-30
ISBN 9781606065808
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue February 2019
Category Architecture & Photography


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