Hippolyte Bayard


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(1801–87), French photographer and inventor, in 1839, of direct-positive photography, a process that produced a unique positive image on paper. The method rivalled the contemporaneous inventions of the daguerreotype and photogenic drawing. Bayard was well connected in the art world of his time. His invention was acclaimed by the Academy of Fine Arts, which saw the advantages of a process on paper for artistic practice. However, he never received support from the Academy of Sciences or the French government. His famous Self-Portrait as a Suicide (1840) satirized his plight as neglected inventor.


From The Oxford Companion to the Photograph in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Photography and Photographs.

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