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When photographs meant something: Meet Cayuga

County’s most prominent early photographers

If you go

WHAT: “Faces of Cayuga County”

WHEN: Open noon to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays; exhibit continues through Dec. 29

WHERE: Cayuga Museum, 203 Genesee St., Auburn

COST: Suggested admission $3

INFO: Call (315) 253-8051 or visit cayugamuseum.org

AUBURN | Kirsten Wise, curator at the Cayuga Museum, said tangible photographs have their advantages, even in our digital age.

Just what those advantages are, she said, can be learned of first-hand at the museum’s latest exhibit: “Faces of Cayuga County,” a display of hundreds of photographs of, or by, county individuals.

The exhibit opened Nov. 1 and will continue through Dec. 31.

Some of these photographed individuals are more well-known, such as Auburn painter George Clough.

Others are currently “unknown,” as per the museum’s descriptions of some of the photographs.

Either way, Wise said the photos give a glimpse into the county’s past from the photo itself, or the photographer behind the lens.

“I think that there’s something that’s really great about having a tangible photograph,” she said. “It feels like actually having a piece of history in its physical form more than its digital copy.”

Four photographers, each of whom were based in Auburn at various points in their lives, were chosen by the museum to be featured in the exhibit: H. Seymour Squyer, Joseph French, William H. Ernsberger and Emil J. Kraemer.

H. Seymour Squyer

Wise said Squyer must have been one of the more popular photographers in the area, due to the number of photographs in the museum’s collection.

She said they have collected hundreds of photographs by Squyer, who was born in Hannibal back in 1848. His ties to Auburn lie with the locale of his photo studio, which he based at 77 Genesee St. in 1870.

Squyer later partnered with another photographer, Fred Wright, and based a studio, for Squyer and Wright, at 130 Genesee St.

“(Partnership) is typical in photography back then,” she said. “For the most part, the core guys that we are featuring worked by themselves for the majority of their careers, but they did work with other people for short periods of time.”

One of the notable figures Squyer photographed in his career was Clough, the Auburn painter well-known for his landscapes and portraits in the 19th century, Wise said.

Squyer also became well-known for using his photography skills in legal disputes, and continued the craft until his death in 1905.

Joseph French

French was an on-again, off-again photographer for about 30 years. When he was not a photographer, the Auburn man was a milliner: a hat manufacturer.

To be a milliner was a complementary trade with photography for sure, Wise said. French also happened to be heavily involved in the community, serving on the state fireman’s committee in 1880 and the Cayuga County board in 1928.

But when he found the time, French took photographs, two of which featured individual shots of children. There are two separate shots presumably, Wise said, from two separate times.

Despite this, the two individual children are posed the same in each for, Wise said, unknown reasons.

French died in 1934, shortly after serving on the Cayuga County board.

William H. Ernsberger

Like Squyer, Ernsberger was also presumably very popular, Wise said, given the number of photographs the museum has from him in its gallery.

The Trumansberg man, born in 1844, moved to Auburn in 1865 and established a prosperous photographic career in Auburn that spanned more than 60 years.

Two of Ernsberger’s photographs actually have roots in the Cayuga Museum’s property. He photographed portraits of two sisters individually — Sarah J. and Anna E. McComb.

The McCombs were mothered by Anna McComb Sr., who, Wise said, lived in the Cayuga Museum as a housekeeper back when it was a house and not a museum. Wise said the property was built in 1836 and used for many years as a home.

Like most of the other photographers, Ernsberger based himself on Genesee Street, operating a studio with his son, Fred, until his death in 1941, according to the museum’s records.

Emil J. Kraemer

Unlike Ernsberg, Kraemer’s career was rather brief in comparison — a little more than 20 years in length.

He’s originally from Dobbs Ferry, and moved to Auburn when he was 9. Kraemer started as a worker for the Auburn Daily Advertiser with photography on the side, but demands for his photographs forced him to quit to focus on camerawork.

Interestingly enough, Wise said, the only photographs of Kraemer’s in the museum’s collection are group shots — such as a shot of railroad workers, or delivery men.

Wise said it’s impossible to identify since the photograph was found in museum collection without notes or paperwork.

“A lot of the other ones that are in the collection are solo shots in a studio setting, but most of the ones we have from him are of groups outside of a studio,” she said.

Kraemer lived and worked on 176 E. Genesee St. until 1925, when he died of a heart attack while driving.

 

Original post found at www. auburnpub.com

Posted: Saturday, November 16th, 2013 @ 4:16 pm by Nakeia Endres
Filed under: Blog Skaneateles,Events in CNY,History & Arts,Must See and Do,Specials
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 Local Artists Use Paintbrushes and Film to Highlight Nature’s Beauty

MARCELLUS, NY – - From March 4th to April 26th, paintings by Karen Burns and photography by  David LoParco depicting local landscapes will be on display in the Art Gallery at Baltimore Woods Nature Center, 4007 Bishop Hill Road, Marcellus.  An artist reception for the show will be held on Sunday, March 10, from 2-4pm. The exhibit and reception are open to the public with no admission or parking fee.

LoParco’s photographs from his Natural Areas series include detailed close-ups of plants, in addition to photographs of local bogs and fields. As LoParco explains, “My Natural Areas series is the result of an effort to use photographic images to create an awareness of our existing protected lands, and inspire people to take action to preserve other properties deemed sensitive.”  LoParco’s artwork reflects a range of locations, including Cornell University’s natural areas, the Chaumont Barrons Preserve, Sapsucker Woods and the Baltimore Woods property.

While Burns’ paintings draw from actual places, many are abstract syntheses, created in the studio. Often described as a colorist, Burns’ work centers on the natural world, and she works primarily in oil paint on canvas.  Other media include watercolor and pastel. Lately she has been experimenting, mixing oils with a wax medium and working on a tinted ground, giving the paintings softness and luminosity.  According to Burns, “My work coalesces around color, light and the things I love — the changing seasons in the northeast, a certain time of day or night, rich textures, surprising shapes; making sense out of chaos or finding wonder in subject matter others dismiss.”

LoParco was born in Syracuse, New York, and has lived in rural central New York for most of his life. Living close to nature has helped instill in him an abiding love for the natural world, which is strongly illustrated in his photography.  Burns grew up in Rochester, New York, and has lived in the Finger Lakes region all of her life, moving to Syracuse seven years ago. Her life-long love and observation of nature has been a major catalyst for her artwork.

More information about Baltimore Woods Nature Center can be found on their website: www.baltimorewoods.org.

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Baltimore Woods Nature Center is located at 4007 Bishop Hill Road, Marcellus, NY 13108. Hours:  Interpretive Center is open M-F 9am-4pm, Saturday 10am-4pm, closed Sundays. The hiking trails and parking are free and open every day from dawn to dusk.

 

Baltimore Woods Nature in the City brings authentic natural science learning to K-6 grade urban school children. Supported by the Syracuse City School District and corporate sponsors, tied to the Syracuse City School District curriculum and New York State Science Standards, lesson content supports teachers while directly impacting students. Holding programs in parks and neighborhood green spaces as well as the classroom, students’ earliest learning experiences in the sciences are relevant, meaningful and fun.

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Posted: Wednesday, February 20th, 2013 @ 12:47 pm by Curt
Filed under: Blog Skaneateles
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