William James Stillman (American, 1828 – 1901)
Acropolis and Temple of Jupiter
Reproduction print from an Albumen silver print, 1882
This photograph is one of the opening images in the album (number 5). Stillman introduces us to the Acropolis through a series of views from distant vantage points. Taken from the South-East looking North-West, the photograph is distinguished by its striking point of view, strong diagonal – a compositional device Stillman employed frequently – and by the inclusion of a modern carriage in the otherwise ancient scene. Stillman adhered to Ruskin in the belief that history is part of a continuum and that the past should not be divorced from the present.