September 29, 1998

Sony announces Mavica Printer FVP-1

(c) 1998, Sony Corporation - All rights reserved
Sony Corporation announces plans to launch a new digital color printer, called the Mavica Printer [FVP-1], that is equipped with a 3.5-inch FDD (Floppy Disk Drive). This printer allows users to print pictures taken by Sony's Digital Mavica digital still camera and stored on a 3.5-inch floppy disk.
Availability: Nov. 20, 1998 in Japan
Price: 64,800 yen
Initial Monthly Production: 2000 units
The Mavica Printer offers printing at 1,410,000 pixels (306 x 306 dpi), and it incorporates a 3.5-inch FDD as well as video input / S video input terminals. In addition to Sony's Digital Mavica, the printer can be used with video cameras and VCRs.
Main Features of the Sony Mavica Printer FVP-1
Prints directly from a floppy disk, by simply inserting the disk into the FDD
Resolution of 1,410,000 pixels (306 x 306 dpi)
Equipped with video input / S video input terminals for printing pictures taken from video material
Offers compatibility with Super Coat polished paper, which improves the color reproduction and life of the print
Includes image processing software, for creating original greeting cards, postcards, stickers and labels.
Operates with a wide variety of printing paper such as Super Coat (for high durability), pre-cut stickers, labels for floppy disks, etc.

September 16, 1998

Polaroid at Photokina 1998

Polaroid at Photokina 1998

Polaroid opened its Photokina’98 exhibition today in Cologne, Germany, highlighting new products for amateur photographers and new cyber-ready imaging techniques for professional photographers and business communicators. Polaroid’s "Live For The Moment" exhibition at Photokina ‘98 runs through September 21.

For the consumer, Polaroid is extending its "Live For The Moment" lifestyle message with the introduction of new and enhanced products for amateur photographers and special niche markets.

New Cameras

At Photokina 1998, Polaroid is introducing the world’s first single-use, totally recyclable instant camera that comes complete with ten ready-to-go instant pictures, measuring 4-3/8 x 2-1/2-inches (11.2 x 6.4cm).

The same film format in an economical reloadable camera with its own unique contemporary styling also makes its first European appearance at the Cologne photographic show. Launched earlier this year in Japan, the new Polaroid JoyCam "Hippaley" (Japanese for "pull out") compact camera, like Single-Use Instant , features manual film ejection and a go-anywhere configuration. The new JoyCam has rapidly become the camera of choice in its premiere market among trend-setting teens and young adults, along with the new Polaroid Xiao (from the Chinese for "small" and "smile"), the world’s smallest Polaroid camera. Also a major hit from Nippon Polaroid K.K., the Xiao camera produces mini Polaroid instant pictures measuring 1.4 x 1-inch

(36 x 24mm) and has proven to be the ideal portrait camera with photos being taken, traded, worn on clothing and attached to notebooks and schoolbags. The Xiao camera accepts new 12-exposure Polaroid "Pocket Film." The new, very fun camera and film are scheduled for global introduction in 1999.

New Polaroid ColorShot: World’s Fastest Digital Photo Printer

Following its introduction in its advanced USB (Universal Serial Bus) version in Hanover, Germany, earlier this year, Polaroid’s new ColorShot digital color printer premieres at Photokina ‘98 in a parallel-port version designed for "legacy" computers.

Polaroid ColorShot is the world’s fastest (as quick as 25 seconds) digital color printer providing photo-quality instant color pictures on the desktop using new self-developing Polaroid ColorShot film or Polaroid Image film. The new ColorShot printer provides a true digital "darkroom" for rapid hard-copies of photos captured on the Internet, from e-mail, from a digital camera and from scanned images.

Accompanying the ColorShot debut is the premiere of Polaroid’s new "Connectibles" series of "DirectConnect" cables with integral control unit allowing transfer of digital images to the ColorShot digital printer without the intervention of a computer.

Polaroid is demonstrating its new software called DirectPhoto that permits inclusion of photos in e-mail without the recipient requiring special photo-receipt software and for incorporating photos in desktop publications.

Extreme Films

Also on view at Photokina were Polaroid’s "Extreme" films: a sharper, brighter, bolder, faster-appearing film for Polaroid 600-series cameras and larger-format Image cameras (known as Spectra cameras in the United States) called Extreme Gloss; a matte-surfaced film called Extreme Matte for Polaroid 600 instant photography permits after-exposure creative enhancement with pen, pencils and markers; and black-and-white Extreme Monochrome film for Polaroid 600-series cameras. In the United States and other select world markets, Polaroid’s new Extreme film generation is known as Platinum (Extreme Gloss), AlterImage (Extreme Matte) and Black-and-White (Extreme Monochrome) film.

Newly Styled Cameras for New Customers, New Markets

Complementing Polaroid’s new Extreme film line is the new Polaroid 600 Extreme instant camera, sporting the recently Euro-restyled architecture of the newest Polaroid 600 camera line.

Also on display is the Polaroid SpiceCam -- the European hit in instant photography over the past year and the first Polaroid camera to be named after a rock group -- the Spice Girls.

BabyCam Kit Polaroid is also launching its first-ever "BabyCam" kit in Europe, which features a Polaroid 600 instant camera, an instant visual diary/album for "your baby’s first moments shared in an instant," and distinctive new packaging. The BabyCam kit is designed and packaged to allow retailers, photographic outlets, specialty baby and maternity shops as well as mass merchandisers to promote via point-of-sale displays the once-in-a-lifetime benefits of taking Polaroid instant photographs of the new baby.

35mm Cameras

Making their world debut at Photokina ‘98 are three ultra-contemporary cameras in Polaroid’s new 900 series. They include the 900 FF (for Focus Free) and 900 AF (for Auto Focus) -- both featuring an extra-large viewfinder for more accurate photo composition. The new Polaroid 900-series of high-fashion, high-style 35mm cameras includes the economically priced new Polaroid 900 Zoom camera with a macro-lens setting for dramatic close-ups and a 2:1 (35mm-70mm) motorized zoom-lens. All three new Polaroid 35mm cameras are fully automatic in operation.

New Polaroid Professional Films

For professional photographers, Polaroid has expanded the formats available in its latest highly acclaimed professional film range to include a new 4 x 5-inch

- (9 x 12cm) instant color sheet film called Polacolor 79 and a new 8 x 10-inch

- (18 x 24cm) instant color film called Polacolor 879. The new films, making their world debut at Photokina ‘98, join with the range of Polaroid professional "peel-apart" instant films launched earlier including 10-exposure 3-1/4 x 4-1/4-inch

- (8.2 x 10.8cm) films for professional photographers and for "Studio Polaroid" franchisees, as well as a convenient 4 x 5-inch (9 x 12 cm) Polacolor pack film.

Products for Retailers and Studio Express Franchisees

Bringing the latest technology to instant document portraiture for retailers and Studio Express franchisees, Polaroid is unveiling its new Studio Polaroid 302 Camera System featuring a handheld video camera with built-in LCD "pose preview" screen for passport and other document portraits; the economical new Studio Polaroid 350 Video Document Picture System for Polaroid instant photographic prints; and the ultimate digital "solution" for portrait documents and other client photo services -- the new, high-tech Studio Polaroid 700 Digital Document Imaging System.

Polaroid DirectPhoto software is also "bundled" in a new Polaroid Digital DirectPhoto kit that includes a Polaroid 600 CloseUp camera and a 20-exposure twin-pack of new Polaroid NotePad film, a dedicated "business edition" film based on Polaroid’s latest instant film chemistry.

Because of the film’s high definition colors and edge sharpness, NotePad film is billed as "great for scanning," affording the rapid cyber-transfer of visual information over e-mail, via the Internet or for computer-transferring both visual and written data (NotePad film features note-book-like lines on the lower white border to facilitate on-location notations or written cutlines) in a single visual/written cyber-document.

Additional Polaroid business edition films designed for both office and home use are Polaroid’s new Write-On film affording the ability to add notes or highlight areas directly on the matte-surface print. Called a "writable & drawable" film, new Write-On film can also be scanned and transmitted via computer using Polaroid’s DirectPhoto software. Completing Polaroid’s new commercial film portfolio is new Copy & Fax film, a black-and-white film that produces already "screened" instant prints ideal for photocopying and faxing. A built-in 85-line screen within the new Copy & Fax 10-exposure film pack provides clear "newspaper-like" photo quality images when received by fax or used to add illustrations to photocopied documents.

Polaroid DirectPhoto Imaging Software, the Digital DirectPhoto kit and new NotePad, Write-On and Copy & Fax film highlight Polaroid’s new Digital Imaging Center designed for retailers eager to service the growing Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) market and for retailers now servicing customers with office supplies. Polaroid’s new compact Digital Imaging Center merchandiser makes its world premiere at Photokina ‘98 as a customizable self-serve merchandiser designed to expand to feature such other Polaroid business imaging products as scanners, printers, projectors and the new multi-format range of Polaroid photo-quality inkjet paper.

Polaroid Corporation

Image and Society in the Weimar Republic

A Laboratory of Modernity: Image and Society in the Weimar Republic

Exhibition explores the visual culture of Germany during the Weimar period.


This is a special exhibition, organized to accompany Professor Eric Rentschler's fall course at Harvard in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures Weimar Cinema: The Laboratory of Modernity, explores aspects of the dynamic, avant-garde visual culture of Germany between the two world wars, including many direct and indirect references to film.

Seven extraordinary vintage photographs by László Moholy-Nagy, lent by Robert and Gayle Greenhill of New York City, will anchor the exhibition, which will also include works by artists such as Hannah Höch, Kurt Schwitters, Otto Dix, George Grosz, August Sander, John Heartfield, Josef Albers, Albert Renger-Patzsch, Herbert Bayer, and others.

A Laboratory of Modernity has been selected by Tawney Becker, curatorial assistant of the Busch-Reisinger Museum, and Graham Bader, graduate student in the Department of History of Art and Architecture at Harvard.


Although the short-lived and turbulent Weimar Republic (1919-1933) was a period at times troubled by political and economic instability, ultimately succumbing to the Nazi rise to power in Germany, new media and technologies emerged, fueling the vibrant cultural scene, particularly in the cities. The fall of the imperial regime and its institutions at the end of World War I infused the arts with new vitality. The founding of the Bauhaus, a progressive school for art, architecture, and design, in 1919 heralded a new era for art education, production, and industrial design. Modernism took hold, and avant-garde culture flourished even as the democracy and the economy were weak. It was a time of conflicts and contrasts: new artistic movements and trends struggled with broadening political and social conservatism. The 1920s saw the efflorescence of the photo-illustrated press, and the freshness of the new media-photojournalism, documentary film, broadcasting, and sound recording-in works from this period are felt to this day.

A Laboratory of Modernity is structured around three key themes that investigate use of materials and technique as well as content. The first section Montage: Abstraction and Politics features artistic explorations of the montage technique in collage, prints, and photographs. The flood of technologically recorded reality in both image and sound made suddenly available to the public triggered a splintering of vision seen in the various types of montage witnessed in literature and theater as well as the visual arts. Moholy's manipulation of light in his photograms and dadaist collages by Hannah Höch and Kurt Schwitters evoke the excitement of early experimentation, opening a path for later political application in Heartfield's scathing photomontages for the Berlin-based Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung (workers' illustrated paper) and Lissitzky's dynamic use of the technique in his Catalogue for the Soviet Pavilion for the International Press Exhibition Cologne 1928.

The Modern Subject takes various forms in the second grouping, which is divided into sections focused on figures and types, artist portraits, and the mannequin or doll-like figure. Here exploration of the figure reveals the artists' varied approaches to process and subject-whether viewed through the sober lens of the "New Objectivity" (Neue Sachlichkeit) in realistic portraits by Rudolf Schlichter or Karl Hubbuch, in Otto Dix's intense self-portrait, or in the satirical caricature of Hitler as a barbarian by George Grosz. Beyond these prints and drawings, the photography in this section-penetrating documentary photographs of the German people as catalogued by August Sander and Erna Lendvai-Dircksen, the inspired manipulation of the image by Herbert Bayer and Moholy-Nagy, the unusual viewpoint in Werner Feist's Head (1929), and Joseph Albers' and Lyonel Feininger's investigations of the mannequin-exemplify the new range of approaches to the figure that the camera made possible.

The Weimar period is popularly identified with 1920s Berlin, and it was in the city where culture boomed. Artistic incentive to experiment and explore also drives the Urban Visions presented in the third group of the exhibition. Moholy-Nagy was one of the key members of the Bauhaus faculty and proponent of "productive creation," not reproduction; his ground-breaking Bauhaus Book No. 8: Painting, Photography, Film (1925) in which Paul Citroen's photomontage Metropolis I (1923) is reproduced, is included in the exhibition. Experiments with distorting and often dizzying angles and abstraction are captured in architectural views by Moholy-Nagy and his wife Lucia Schulz Moholy as well as in photographs by Albert Renger-Patzsch and a student of the Bauhaus, Iwao Yamawaki. Grosz's socio-critical street scenes reflect his sharp political views whereas Herbert Bayer's mock-ups for a movie house and a multi-media building still carry the freshness of ideas of the brainstorming architect-designer.

A Laboratory of Modernity will provide the public with a first glimpse at several recent acquisitions by the Busch-Reisinger and the Fogg, including exciting photography from this period as well as a few rarely seen examples of work by women photographers. The exhibition is supported with funds from the John M. Rosenfield Teaching Exhibition Fund.


Related Events

Gallery talks at Busch-Reisinger Museum

November 7-8, with Christine Mehring, Ph.D. candidate, Department of History of Art & Architecture.
November 28-29, with Graham Bader, graduate student, Department of History of Art & Architecture.
December 5, with Sarah Miller, Werner and Maren Otto Curatorial Intern, Busch-Reisinger Museum
December 20, January 9, with Tawney Becker, curatorial assistant, Busch-Reisinger Museum.

Film Series - Weimar Cinema

September 22 through December 15, 1998
Harvard Film Archive, Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920), directed by Robert Wiene

Destiny (1920), directed by Fritz Lang

Nosferatu (1922), directed by F.W. Murnau

The Last Laugh (1924), directed by F.W. Murnau

The Joyless Street (1925), directed by G.W. Pabst

Secrets of a Soul (1926), directed by G.W. Pabst

Metropolis (1927), directed by Fritz Lang

Berlin, Symphony of a Big City (1927), directed by Walter Ruttman

The White Hell of Pitz Palü (1929), directed by A. Franck and G.W. Pabst

M (1931), directed by Fritz Lang

The Blue Angel (1930), directed by Joseph von Sternberg

Mädchen in Uniform (1931), directed by Leontine Sagan

The Blue Light (1932), directed by Leni Riefenstahl



Busch-Reisinger Museum from October 31, 1998 through January 10, 1999

September 13, 1998

Delacroix: The Late Work, Philadelphia Museum of Art

Delacroix: The Late Work
Philadelphia Museum of Art
September 15, 1998 - January 3, 1999

In celebration of the 200th anniversary of the artist's birth, the Philadelphia Museum of Art presents Delacroix: The Late Work, an exhibition exploring the final years of the great French painter Eugène Delacroix (1798-1863). Some 70 paintings and 40 works on paper by one of the most important artists of the 19th century, lent by museums and private collections throughout Europe and the Americas, are arranged by theme in six categories—animals, allegory and mythology, flowers and landscapes, literary illustrations, scenes of North Africa, and religion—that reveal the artist's immense achievement during the last 15 years of his life. 

Delacroix: The Late Work sheds new light on this monumental figure in the history of art, whom the renowned French poet Charles Baudelaire described in 1845 as "the most original painter of ancient or modern times." Considered the last "Old Master," Delacroix consciously placed himself in the painterly tradition of Veronese, Titian, Rubens, and Rembrandt, yet he was also the driving force in the French Romantic Movement, a radical new approach to art developed in Paris in the early decades of the 1800s. Delacroix formed the link between the traditions of the past and the modern movements, ultimately having a profound influence upon the Impressionists, particularly Renoir and Cézanne, as well as such 20th-century masters as Picasso and Matisse. Cézanne said that Delacroix had "the greatest palette of France, and no one beneath our skies possessed to a greater extent the vibration of color. We all paint through him."

Eugène Delacroix was a remarkably prolific artist, creating in his lifetime over 850 paintings and more than 2000 watercolors and drawings. This exhibition focuses on the works of the mature artist, from the year 1848 to his death in 1863 at the age of 65. These last years of his life were a time of profound reflection for Delacroix, steeped in nostalgia and swept by deep, erotically charged, emotions. Among the great admirers of Delacroix's talent was the American novelist Henry James, who in 1872 remarked that the painter's "imaginative impulse begins where that of most painters ends."

The exhibition features a selection of Eugène Delacroix's late representations of North Africa, a place where the artist had spent several months in 1832. It was a visit that would have a profound effect on the light, color, and imagery of his painting for the rest of his life. These subjects, reconsidered some 30 years after his actual experience, are a vivid testimony to his love of North Africa and its hold on his imagination. Delacroix will conclude with an exploration of the artist's representations of religious subjects. It is one of the great paradoxes of modern art history that Delacroix, a worldly Parisian who confessed skepticism of any organized religion, should be the greatest religious painter of the 19th century. This exhibition presents a unique opportunity to examine the range and power Delacroix's biblical subjects, such as The Good Samaritan (c. 1850; Waterhouse Collection), which were executed with a deep awareness of similar works by such masters as Rembrandt, Rubens, Titian, and Veronese, as well as the sequence of closely related compositions of Christ on the Sea of Galilee that also look forward to Monet's famous series paintings.

Delacroix: The Late Work presents paintings and works on paper that are multi-faceted and introspective, suffused by an increasingly complex and passionate use of color as well as a renewed spiritual intensity. Soon after the artist's death, Théophile Silvestre spoke to these same qualities in the final years of the artist's life: "Delacroix died, almost smiling...a painter of great genius, who had the sun in his head and storms in his heart, who for forty years played the entire keyboard of human emotion, and whose grandiose, terrible, and delicate brushes passed from saints to warriors, from warriors to lovers, from lovers to tigers and from tigers to flowers."

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated, 350-page catalogue, with essays on subjects including Delacroix's technique, how the artist was viewed by his contemporaries, and issues of continuity and variation in his work.

The exhibition has been organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art in conjunction with the Réunion des Musées Nationaux in Paris. The curators of the exhibition are Joseph J. Rishel, Senior Curator of European Painting at the Philadelphia Museum of Art; Arlette Sérullaz, Curator of Prints at the Musée du Louvre and Director of the Musée Delacroix; and Vincente Pomarède, Chief Curator of Paintings at the Musée du Louvre. The Philadelphia Museum of Art is the exhibition's only venue in North America.


Peter Saul: Recent Drawing, Nolan Eckman Gallery, NYC

Peter Saul: Recent Drawing
Nolan/Eckman Gallery, New York
September 17 – October 17, 1998

Peter Saul likens his art to a cold shower or unwelcome interrogation. Clearly, what the artist has in mind is a confrontation. Notwithstanding, the work that he extends to us as provocation is revealing and elemental, highly personal, and fully imbued with humor and charm (a pie in the face, perhaps?).

Peter Saul’s bright colors and lunatic subjects are also litmus tests for the soul; fearlessly visceral, incendiary, and downright disturbing. Define the opposite of political correctness and you will have found Peter Saul. He will accept any reaction but indifference. He speaks in the language of everyday people, uses familiar images and trusts unfailingly in our judgment and humanity.

Over the years, Peter Saul has methodically cut and slashed his way through much of American culture. He has grappled with Vietnam, Angela Davis, the Women’s Movement, racism, Ronald Regan, the male ego, and (recently) Viagra. Through political and topical commentary, Saul partakes of the artistic tradition of social criticism and satire, as embodied by Rabelais, Hogarth, Gross, and Dix.

Peter Saul was born in 1934 in San Francisco. As a young man, he moved between Holland, Paris, and Rome before returning to California in 1964. He resided in Austin, Texas since 1981, and continues to exhibit in this country and internationally. This is his first exhibition at Nolan/Eckman.

560 Broadway, New York, NY 10012

September 9, 1998

Canon Speedlite 550EX Flash and Wireless Transmitter ST-E2 specifications

Canon Speedlite 550EX is the main component of a new flash system designed together with the EOS-3 SLR camera. It provides full compatibility with the new area AF technology employed by the EOS-3 and refined E-TTL autoflash for improved performance. Other main features include a maximum Guide Number of 180 (ISO 100, ft.), an AF-assist beam which links to the EOS-3's 45-point area AF, FP Flash (high speed sync), FE lock (a flash version of AE lock), and FEB (Flash Exposure Bracketing). The Speedlite 550EX also incorporates a built-in wireless transmitter, which can control other Speedlite 550EX units set up as slave units. Flash coverage is set automatically from 24mm to 105mm, and a wide-angle panel extends the coverage to 17mm. The new Speedlite runs on 4 AA-size batteries, and can also be used with optional external power supplies such as Compact Battery Pack E and Transistor Pack E. Recycling times are similar to those experienced with the Speedlite 540EZ. Speedlite 550EX is compatible with all EOS models.

The most impressive feature of the 550EX, however, is its ability to support a wireless multiple flash system which allows photographers to set up unlimited numbers of additional Speedlite 550EX flashes as slave units while controlling their flash output from the camera position. Even when using multiple Speedlites, photographers can utilize all of the 550EX's advanced features including E-TTL, FP flash, FE lock and Flash Exposure Bracketing (FEB).

All 550EX controls are located on the rear of the unit, including a Master/Slave switch, indicating whether the flash will be used as a Master (on the camera's hot shoe) or as a remote Slave. The remote flash system permits photographers to set up as many as three groups (designated A, B or C) of 550EX Speedlites set up as slave units with virtually unlimited numbers of flash units possible within each group.

When using the EOS-3 with multiple Speedlite 550EX flash units, or when shooting with E-TTL wireless autoflash using the Speedlite 550EX in conjunction with the wireless Speedlite Transmitter ST-E2, the output ratio of two different slave groups can be set on the master unit. The A:B flash ratio can be set to any of thirteen half-step increments ranging from 8:1 to 1:8. Flash exposure compensation for slave group C can be set on the master unit in 1/3 or 1/2 stop increments up to +/- 3 stops. This is ideal for background or accent lighting when shooting portraits in a studio setting, for example. Power output for each Slave unit can be controlled directly from the Master flash or Speedlite Transmitter ST-E2, eliminating the need to adjust each Slave unit from its remote location. In addition, the system offers a "modeling lamp" function which gives photographers a good idea of how lighting will fall on the subject. The wireless remote flash system has a range of approximately 35 feet when used outdoors and approximately 50 feet indoors. Each slave unit, when signalled by a test flash from the Master Unit, indicates its readiness in ascending order according to its assigned group, giving photographers the ability to verify that the slave units are within range and functioning properly. An LED indicator on the back of the Master Unit acts as a flash exposure confirmation signal, and is fully effective even in wireless multiple flash setups.

Canon Speedlite Transmitter ST-E2

Canon's wireless Speedlite Transmitter ST-E2 is ideal for use by photographers who do not need to have any light source emanating directly from the camera position, but wish to utilize the system's remote flash capabilities. Mounted on the hot shoe of the camera, the wireless transmitter serves as the Master, controlling the functions of up to two groups of 550EX Slave units. Like the 550EX, the ST-E2 also has a built-in AF-assist beam which is linked to the EOS-3's area AF.

The new Canon Speedlite 550EX flash and Wireless Transmitter ST-E2 will be available in USA at Canon authorized camera dealers in early December.