Science Commons Cyanotype Exhibit and Workshop

A cyanotype of plant life by Anna Atkins

Emory Libraries is supporting the Atlanta Science Festival with an exhibit and workshop at the Science Commons in the Atwood Chemistry Center. “Art and Science of Light: Cyanotype and Photograms” displays the history and process of photography’s early years.

English botanist Anna Atkins

English botanist Anna Atkins

Developed in 1842 by the English scientist Sir John Herschel, cyanotype was one of the first stable methods of capturing light. English botanist Anna Atkins, often considered the first female photographer, used cyanotype to make shadow prints (photograms) of sea-algae. Published in 1843, her “Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions” was the first photo illustrated book. Two other volumes on plant life followed.

As part of the Chemistry Carnival, a free cyanotype/photogram workshop will be held on Friday, March 22 in the atrium of the Atwood Chemistry Center. It begins at 3:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to come try this fun and easy photo process! Until then, you are encouraged to visit the display at Science Commons. Learn the history and process of cyanotype, see examples, and browse books related to Anna Atkins, cyanotype, and photograms. The exhibit will run until March 29.