This is the first published collection of American examples of the cliché-verre process; the use of drawing or painting on glass which was then used to make photographic prints. This process was popularized in France by Corot, and used by other artists including Paul Klee. In the first three pages, the author outlines his process in detail with his own improvements for rendering detail in skies and distant backgrounds. The photographic printing was performed by P.C. Duchochois. The plates are drawn by 12 different American artists of the time, including Durand, Kensett and Johnson; the process is described in Wakeman’s Victorian Book Illustration, and is there called “hyalography”: “one obvious way of making prints, after the invention of photography, was to manufacture a drawn negative instead of using a camera; but despite its obvious attractions, this was done surprisingly little. It was seen at its most successful, artistically, in the cliché-verre prints made by continental artists like Corot, Millet and Rousseau.”
Foster, Sheila J, Manfred Heiting, and Rachel Stuhlman. Imagining Paradise: The Richard and Ronay Menschel Library at George Eastman House, Rochester. Göttingen: Steidl, 2007 p. 146
Ehninger, John W. Autograph Etchings by American Artists: Produced by a New Application of Photographic Art. New York: W.A. Townsend, 1859.
New York Public Library. Bulletin of the New York Public Library. (Spring 1977) no. 32a. See
Gernsheim, History, pp. 251-2
Wood 136 #236