Genesis to Jubilee
The Story of Falkirk Camera Club
31 March - 28 April
The first photograph ever was produced in France in 1826 although it was 1839 before two improved but competing processes were announced, one in France and one in the United Kingdom. Those brought photography within reach of a privileged few who could afford the considerable expense and also possessed the expertise.
During the mid 19th century artists, chemists and innovators in Scotland became photographers playing an historic role in advancing the medium. It is fitting that in 1889, as costs fell and chemical processes became slightly more achievable photographers in Falkirk were among the first to band together by forming the Falkirk Amateur Photographic Association. That group survived two World Wars and various incarnations before, on 17th April 1958, becoming the Falkirk Camera Club which we know today.
This exhibition tells the story of that journey. We chart the formation, and identify the members of that late 19th century group with Falkirk Herald reports of their activities. For the first time in almost 80 years, we exhibit the first photograph which a Club photographer exhibited internationally by touring it in the U.S.A. immediately before WWII. We show the first Print Of The Year from the re-named Falkirk Camera Club in 1958 and one of the first photographs which one of their members exhibited nationally.
We have a 1962 award winning photograph from a photographer still active in the Club today, photographs which were exhibited internationally from the 1980's through to the present day and crucially, the work of photographers who have only joined the group within the past few months.
Falkirk Camera Club has flourished due to the skill and dedication of many, many photographers starting with those 19th century pioneers. While a small number are represented in this exhibition it is they who made a notable impact on the life of the Club. In a location steeped in the manufacturing instigated by the Industrial Revolution, they provided a forum for self expression or, for individuals to simply better record the lives of their family and friends.
Today, in the 21st century, the photographic process has evolved way beyond their capabilities, but perhaps not beyond their dreams. We continue to strive to match their ingenuity and hope that you enjoy our exhibition.
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West Bridge Street