William James Stillman (American, 1828 – 1901)
“Atene” Album of Photographs
albumen silver prints, 1882
courtesy of the Stillman Collection, Special Collections, Schaffer Library, Union College
This album contains over sixty prints made by Stillman after his second photographic foray to the Athenian Acropolis in 1882. Each print is numbered and labeled in Stillman’s hand, and placed in the album with a single print on the recto of each page. Stillman’s arrangement of the photographs presents the viewer first with a series of distant overviews which circle the Acropolis, and then with closer views and details of each structure. Stillman’s “Atene” album progresses in a repeated rhythm from wide view to close up to small detail, as he approaches each building – a rhythm which reflects the experience of discovery a visitor makes when exploring the Acropolis.