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classic exhibition print sizes

Thomas Graichen , Sep 06, 2008; 04:06 a.m.


just a little question out of curiosity: what were the typical and the maximal print sizes used in photography exhibitions during the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s and so on of the last century? what kind of presentations were most common during those times - i assume passepartout mounted prints?

a lot of thanks in advance and best wishes



Lex Jenkins , Sep 06, 2008; 05:48 a.m.

In my area (Fort Worth, Texas), the Amon Carter Museum has a large gallery of photographs dating back to the 19th century, and hosts traveling exhibits. I haven't noticed any particular trend in sizes. Contact prints from large format are common, so the typical sizes are seen - 4x5, 5x7, 8x10, etc. Enlargements run the gamut from a few inches on up.

From recent decades 16x20 seems to be a popular size for more contemporary prints in museums and local galleries, regardless of film format. Prints from Avedon's "In the American West" exhibit included virtually life size portraits. Elsewhere, in a Dallas gallery, I've seen several Michael Kenna prints, most of which were approximately 8"x8", framed with vertically oriented mounts.

I'm attending a local gallery crawl tomorrow. I'll update this thread if I spot any different trends.

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