"Photography and the 1851 Great Exhibition" by Anthony Hamber

Nov 13, 2018

With a foreward by Tristram Hunt and an essay by Nicholas Burnett

This is the first comprehensive study of the diverse role and impact of photography at the 1851 Great Exhibition in London, drawing together two decades of research to create a broader understanding of the step-change in image making and distribution represented by The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations - the genesis of the V&A. 


While the Great Exhibition has received a variety of detailed examinations, its role in exhibiting and furthering the cause and exploitation of photography and its impact on illustration has been largely underappreciated. More broadly, 1851 saw a massive change in information management: in the creation and dissemination of visually based graphic information characterized by images of the building, its contents and their display that collectively constituted the Great Exhibition. Photography played a critical role in this quantum leap. 


Hardcover  2.2 x 5.8 x 30.4 cm, 416 pages

Available from the Victoria and Albert Museum Shop (£65) and

Oak Knoll Press in the Americas ($95)

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