Neusüss brought renewed ambition to the photogram process, in both scale and visual treatment, with the Körperfotogramms (or whole-body photograms) that he first exhibited in the 1960s. Since that time, he has consistently explored the photogram’s numerous technical, conceptual and visual possibilities.
The V&A exhibition was a representative selection made by the Münchner Stadtmuseum from the Neusüss archive; the works spanned the years 1958-1983 and fell into four thematic categories: dream images, shop windows, portraits and conceptual photography. The work stretches from Neusüss’s student days to his first teaching post as a professor of experimental photography at the University of Kassel and his activities at the Fotoforum.
The earliest non-film, non-paper photographs were Daguerreotypes. They were made between about 1839 and 1860, although some continued to be made up until present time by those who admire this process. The image set onto polished silver — this was a non-emulsion method — so they have a mirrored surface in which you can see your reflection. You won’t find this with any other type of photographic process. This highly reflective cover makes it a little difficult to understand the image itself without turning it back and forth until it is at an angle where the subject matter is visible and apparent.
The Ambrotype was the favoured successor to the Daguerreotype. While the image was inferior to the Daguerreotypes, it was cheaper and easier to produce. It is considered to have an image quality between Daguerreotypes and tintypes. Ambrotypes were at the height of their popularity between about 1853 and 1870. Today one of the leading photographers producing Ambrotypes is Ian Ruhter. You can find out more about Ian HERE.