The Human Zoo and Its Double

  • Katherine Groo
Part of the Screening Spaces book series (SCSP)

At the western edge of Paris, just south of the Bois de Boulogne, an eccentric banker named Albert Kahn developed an elaborate set of intersecting heterotopian projects at the turn of the twentieth century. Among them is an extraordinary archive of colour autochromes and 35 mm films, gathered by a group of cameramen during more than two decades of image-making excursions throughout France and around the world. This photo-film project would come to be known as the Archives de la Planète.1 It began in 1908 with an amateur adventure and continued in 1909 under the direction of Jean Brunhes, Chair of Human Geography at the Collège de France. 2For both Kahn and Brunhes, the combination of photography and film held out the promise of complete visual reproduction. The autochrome process would produce stillness and surfaces in colour. Cinema would capture motion and duration in black and white. Each method would constitute one part of a more perfect, visual whole: a totalizing record of...

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katherine Groo
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Film and Media Studies, Lafayette CollegeEastonUSA

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