The devastating events of World War I were captured in myriad photographs on all sides of the front. Far less familiar are the rare colour images of the First World War, taken at the time by a small group of photographers pioneering recently developed autochrome technology. This volume brings together all of these pictures of the "war to end war".
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The colours of catastrophe. Rediscovered autochrome photography of the First World War. The devastating events of World War I were captured in myriad photographs on all sides of the front. Since then, thousands of books of black-and-white photographs of the war have been published as all nations endeavor to comprehend the scale and the carnage of the "greatest catastrophe of the 20th century." Far less familiar are the rare colour images of the First World War, taken at the time by a small group of photographers pioneering recently developed autochrome technology. To mark the centenary of the outbreak of war, this groundbreaking volume brings together all of these remarkable, fully hued pictures of the "war to end war". Assembled from archives in Europe, the United States, and Australia, more than 350 color photos provide unprecedented access to the most important developments of the period-from the mobilisation of 1914 to the victory celebrations in Paris, London, and New York in 1919.
The volume represents the work of each of the major autochrome pioneers of the period, including Paul Castelnau, Fernand Cuville, Jules Gervais-Courtellemont, Leon Gimpel, Hans Hildenbrand, Frank Hurley, Jean-Baptiste Tournassoud, and Charles C. Zoller. Since the autochrome process required a relatively long exposure time, almost all of the photos depict carefully composed scenes, behind the rapid front line action. We see poignant group portraits, soldiers preparing for battle, cities ravaged by military bombardment-the daily human existences and the devastating aftermaths that surrounded activity on the front. A century on, this unprecedented publication brings a startling human reality to one of the most momentous upheavals in history.