Fine Arts Library

Photographers’ Archives

   Buddha, Bamiyan, Afghanistan.

Josephine Powell. Buddha, Bamiyan, Afghanistan. AF2-8 Color.

The Fine Arts Library holds the photographic archives of former faculty members as well the work of other architectural and ethnographic scholars.

Rebii Barkin

Born in Istanbul, physician and amateur photographer Rebii Barkin was attached to the Turkish embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, in the 1930s. The collection includes chiefly snapshots and travel views of Afghanistan.

Edgar J. Fisher

E.J. Fisher was professor and dean at Robert College, Istanbul. Fisher and his wife seem rarely to have been without their cameras, and the collection includes thousands of their snapshots. Fisher seems to have as eagerly acquired photographs from other sources during his tenure in Istanbul from 1913 to 1933.

Clarence Kennedy

Art historian and photographer Clarence Kennedy (1892-1972) taught art history at Smith College. His work chiefly includes photographs of sculpture, many taken from several different angles and levels of light to highlight various details and textural qualities. The images show more than 950 different works of mostly Italian Renaissance and Classical Greek sculpture.

Ralph Lieberman

Ralph Lieberman is an art historian and photographer specializing in Italian Renaissance architecture and sculpture. He has taught history of architecture at various schools including Williams College, Harvard University, and the Rhode Island School of Design, and his photographs have appeared in many publications.

Arthur Kingsley Porter

Medieval architectural historian Arthur Kingsley Porter was a professor in the Fine Arts Department at Harvard University from 1920-1925. The Porter photograph collection includes general and detail views chiefly of Byzantine and medieval architecture and sculpture.

Josephine Powell

Born in New York, photographer and ethnographic collector Josephine Powell received an MA in social work from Columbia University in 1945. After teaching herself how to use a camera, she moved to Rome and began work in 1953 as a freelance photographer specializing in art, architecture, and ethnography. In 1974, she moved to Istanbul and remained there, becoming an expert on the villages, nomads, and textiles of Anatolia. Throughout her career as a photographer she traveled widely in Europe, the Middle East, India, and Northern Africa. The collection includes photographs documenting the architecture, art, culture, and ethnology of countries in the Middle East and North Africa; Central, South, and Southeast Asia; and Italy, Greece, and the Balkans. Images of art and architecture show frescoes, mosaics, and sculpture, including many stone-carved reliefs; textile and other decorative arts, with many objects from museum collections in Kabul, Peshawar, Delhi, and elsewhere; and architectural images, including Islamic, Byzantine, Hindu and Buddhist structures. Ethnographic images, mostly from Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan, include portraits and scenes of daily life in cities, towns, and rural areas showing men, women, and children of different ethnic groups and religions, including nomadic people engaged in various activities, such as weaving, pottery, farming, fishing, music, dancing, festivals, and ceremonies.

Judith Hancock Sandoval

Judith Hancock de Sandoval was a pioneer in the photography of colonial architecture in Mexico. The archive contains photographs and accompanying research materials; almost half documents historical Mexican art and architecture from the 16th to 20th centuries, with an emphasis on Spanish colonial and vernacular architecture and extensive coverage of the Federal District, Oaxaca, and central Mexico.

Karl S. Twitchell Archive

Karl Twitchell was an American geologist who worked in Yemen and Saudi Arabia in the 1930s.   His extensive photographic record includes Yemen and Arabia and continues up to the early 1950s.

Baroness Marie-Thérèse Ullens de Schooten Archive

Baroness Ullens spent several months every year from 1951 to 1972 in Iran, pursuing her interest in the great nomadic and seminomadic peoples of the west and south, the Qashqa'i and the Bakhtiari, as well as the Kurds and Türkmen. Her archive comprises color slides, photographs and negatives, films, and audiotapes. The images document ancient sites, Islamic architecture, and the landscape and ethnography of Iran.

Langdon Warner

Art historian, explorer, archaeologist, and Asian art collector Langdon Warner graduated from Harvard in 1903. He was appointed professor in the Fine Arts Department and curator of Asian art at the Fogg Art Museum in 1923. His photographs date mainly from his expeditions in China and Central Asia.

  • For more information about the collections, please contact Joanne Bloom, Photographic Resources Librarian.

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