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The World in Colour before 1914

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The exhibition revolves around near-forgotten colour photographs and films commissioned by French banker Albert Kahn in the years leading up to the First World War.

Fascinated by the colour development techniques of the brothers Lumière, Kahn commissioned a variety of photographers, male and female, to provide him with colour photographs from around the world, with the aim to create an Archives de la planète.

This archive now consists of over 70,000 colour photographs. The collection not only represents a remarkable ethnographic treasure, but was also intended as a peace-keeping mission – by bringing foreign worlds closer, replacing alienation with familiarity. Kahn's endeavour was designed to help secure peace in a world that was already preparing for war. This exhibition brings to light a treasure of images from a time that has long ceased to exist.

For further information visit
Martin-Gropius-Bau

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