The Hartnett Collection: Vintage Photographs from 1860 – 1950
#1 in our New Collections series
Introducing a new archive of vintage photographs from the Hartnett Collection
Paul Hartnett has been documenting the extremes of street and club culture on an international basis since his first club snap back in 1976.
Paul contributes a 12 year collection of Vintage photographs spanning from 1860 – 1950, adding new unseen depths into PYMCA. The Hartnett Collection shed’s a blinding light onto the alternative sides of 19th century society, providing a rare glimpse into the unseen world of pre-war drag acts and outlandish fashion.
From the 1950s holiday snapshots to pin sharp 18th century Tin-Types, we’re transported to an era so alien from our own. It’s not only the age, but the true permanence of these photographs that appear so compelling. Each photograph is poignantly staged, freezing a moment that barely existed.
Alongside a vast array of technically perfect vintage images, this collection represents an era on the brink of the camera becoming accessible, and where life’s spontaneity was slowly given the chance to be documented. Some of these images reflect beautiful friendships and families united, a long lost pet or a child’s most treasured toy.
Paul’s collection is the product of a passionate decade-long hunt through the forgotten photographs of days gone-by. The collection provides us with an affirming glimpse into the colloquial corners of Britain’s past and renders even more reason to assume our grandparents were just as bad.
“My photographic archive spans from 1976 to now. As the Vintage section of this site also reflects, I’ve collected vintage photographs for many years, images that contain a strong Fashion History and Social History content, dating from 1850 to 1950. These visuals, documented in a broad range of photographic processes, balance my own photographic work, which continues the street-style story that travelling tintypists documented with such vigour” – Paul Hartnett.
To view the whole Hartnett Vintage Collection visit www.pymca.com