Throughout the years, I have reached many digital and physical photographs of Sébah&Joaillier who is a part of my family. My goal is to create a digital collection and present these beauties to the public and to the future; I do not see any benefit of keeping them on dusty shelves.
The part that I am particularly concerned is the period from the beginning of the partnership until the death of Joailler, ie between 1885-1904. It is possible to find pictures by Pascal Sébah, Jean Pascal Sébah and Cosmi Sébah, but I have tried to give importance to a very specific period.
Due to this fixed period, the number of photographs by Sébah & Joaillier is limited. With the exception of cabin portraits and private shots, it can be estimated that the number of varieties of existing photos does not exceed 1,500. There are approximately 1,300 of these in my digital collection (April 2019).
The special shootings such as Abdülhamit and Baghdad Railway Construction, on different subjects exist but it can be estimated that the number is few.
The inestimable quantity of cabine portraits is high due to the daily store duty. Every family can have several in their old albums. There are approximately 300 pieces in my digital collection (April 2019).
I keep adding new photos as long as I get them.
The majority of the photos are albumen print and a small part is silver prints. The technical features of these types of printings can be viewed on videos through the internet.
The fact that many photographs date from 1880s-1890s and printed on very thin paper makes physical protection conditions important. Especially with their organic structure the albumen prints are likely to deteriorate over time and different forms of wear can be observed.
Naturally, for collectors old albumen photos have high importance. They have an antique look with their shades of sepia color and they become rare with and increasing value. At that time these photos were more in the interest of tourists, so today it is possible to find few of them in the collections and museums outside of Turkey.
At the same period, these photographs were purchased by printing houses and used in postcard production, some of them were also colored. Today some of them can be found in ephemeras and auction houses.
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Fabrizio Casaretto – November 2018