The digitization of photographic albums at the Victoria and Albert Museum and other London-based cultural institutions
thesisposted on 08.06.2021, 14:07 authored by Daphne Yuen
This thesis investigates current digitization approaches to photographic albums by surveying the practices at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, England alongside three other London-based institutions: the British Museum, British Library, and National Portrait Gallery. It highlights the value in researching and recording these documentation methods as an integral yet often overlooked part of museums’ institutional history. For contextual background for the survey, a brief history of photographic albums and their inherent conservation issues is presented along with albums’ digitization guidelines and a discussion of how digitization influences our relationship to the original object. The types of digitization methods employed at each institution is then examined to understand how curatorial and technical factors influence the digitization process and to observe the trends across the four institutions. A case study was performed at the Victoria and Albert Museum of a photographic album being digitized and is included in the appendices.