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Alan Griffiths
photo historian, Canada

Luminous-Lint: Weaving a Multi-Dimensional Tapestry on Photohistory – Challenges and Opportunities

Tuesday, 23 October 2018, 10.00 a.m.
Library of the Romanian Academy
"Ion Heliade Rădulescu" Amphitheatre
125, Calea Victoriei, Bucharest

Photohistory is a complex blending of biographical, technical and thematic information. Photographs and archival research materials are scattered between thousands of collections with different perspectives and cataloging standards. The traditional model of monographs and articles based on exhibitions is now being questioned by Internet based resources that bring together information from thousands of sources to create repositories of knowledge (i.e. Daguerreobase) or broader frameworks to examine the whole of photohistory (Luminous-Lint). In this talk we'll examine the progress of Luminous-Lint so far and the opportunities for collaborative research based on images from over 3,250 distinct collections.


Alan Griffiths started out as a prehistoric archaeologist specializing in animal movements in Sardinia. Realizing that it is difficult to make a living in this field he moved into computer consultancy and academic research. He lectured at Sheffield University in the UK on Multimedia, was a visiting lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh and a Visiting Professor at the University of Massachusetts in addition to giving lectures widely. He has consulted for the British Library, NATO, IBM, Hewlett-Packard and was the Chief Information Officer for an ill-fated dot com start-up in the USA.

He has been interested in photography for many years and created www.luminous-lint.com in 2005 to help explore the history in some depth. To date photographs from almost 3,000 organisations, photographers, photographic galleries and private collectors around the world have been included. This allows users to explore an ever-expanding online history through over 700 online exhibitions, numerous biographies, techniques, timelines and a visually rich website. Luminous-Lint includes over a thousand parallel and interlinked histories of photography and it is used by major institutions around the world.

The event is initiated by G. Oprescu Institute of Art History – Romanian Academy. Coordinator: dr. Adrian-Silvan Ionescu.
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