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FRAMES BEHIND THE THRONE: CONTEXTUALIZING THE CALOTYPE ALBUMS OF PRINCE ALBERT 1850-1859

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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/20790

FRAMES BEHIND THE THRONE: CONTEXTUALIZING THE CALOTYPE ALBUMS OF PRINCE ALBERT 1850-1859

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dc.contributor.author Sorensen-Clem, Sherri
dc.date.accessioned 2012-07-03T16:08:17Z
dc.date.available 2012-07-03T16:08:17Z
dc.date.issued 2012-07-03
dc.date.submitted May 2012
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1928/20790
dc.description.abstract This thesis examines four extant calotype albums from the collection of Prince Albert and, contains approximately 383 images ranging in date from 1850-1859. I propose that the photographs in these albums, which belong to Queen Victoria’s husband, operate as fragments of the visual world and form a pictorial autobiography of the Prince Consort, offering frames behind the throne. It is my contention that Prince Albert uses the mimetic faculty of the photograph and its placement within the album to become an object of narrative, autobiography, and identity. This thesis will also attempt to contextualize the historical impact of being a foreigner within the politically charged marriage to Queen Victoria and how Prince Albert used his active engagement in the collection of art and his burgeoning interest in promoting new technologies to elevate his social status. In reading Prince Albert’s albums as historical texts we discover that, while Prince Albert’s albums contribute to Victorian culture, provide an insight into his royal public and viii private life, they also archive photography as a new form of representation. As formal albums, they enshrine the passion and desire to collect and possess in a manner similar to the engraved folio collections of antiquities put together by such scholars and connoisseurs as William Hamilton and the Comte de Caylus from the previous century. The albums, as paper galleries, showcase the miniaturized subject—artifacts, collectibles, people, places, and events—and turn these subjects into objects of collection, possessions to be archived for posterity in photographic form. For Prince Albert, these albums as collections become, in part, conversations to the self that illustrate the broader scope of this visual autobiography during his twenty year marriage to Queen Victoria. As a suspended conversation, the albums are a collection of sentiments, a series of individual utterances, a private monologue formulated by Prince Albert to visually validate and evoke the many pleasures and accomplishments in his life. In contrast to the historical focus on Queen Victoria’s life, Prince Albert’s albums allows us to see a different view—his world as he organized and created it. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject Prince Albert, Calotypes, 19th Century Photography, Victorian England en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Calotype -- Britain -- History -- 19th Century -- Collectors and collecting
dc.subject.lcsh Photographic albums -- Britain -- History -- 19th Century
dc.subject.lcsh Albert, Prince Consort, consort of Victoria, Queen of Great Britain, 1819-1861
dc.title FRAMES BEHIND THE THRONE: CONTEXTUALIZING THE CALOTYPE ALBUMS OF PRINCE ALBERT 1850-1859 en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.description.degree Art History en_US
dc.description.level Masters en_US
dc.description.department University of New Mexico. Dept. of Art and Art History en_US
dc.description.advisor Buick, Kirsten Pai
dc.description.committee-member Anderson-Riedel, Susanne
dc.description.committee-member Moore, Allison


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