Artist and Photographer (1823-93)
Introduction by Sir Brian May
978-0-9574246-9-2 | Hardcover | 208 pages | 9.5″ x 12.8″
List Price: $50.00
From the world’s foremost authority on George Washington Wilson comes the definitive account of one of Scotland’s leading innovators of the Victorian era. Complete with 3-D stereo images and a complimentary 3-D viewer, Roger Taylor presents a stunning view into the life and work of this singular artist. After beginning his career painting portrait miniatures, George Washington Wilson discovered the newly emerging art form of photography, and soon began making a name for himself with his photographic portraiture. Spurred on by a growing public interest in stereoscopy, Wilson created a thriving enterprise selling beautifully crafted stereo cards of Scottish landscapes to visiting tourists. As his reputation grew, he began to attract the attention of some high-profile patrons. Prince Albert commissioned him to photograph the construction of Balmoral Castle, and he also captured many historic portraits of Queen Victoria, who would later honor him with the title “Photographer to the Queen.”
Roger Taylor has spent his entire professional life working with photography, initially as a commercial and industrial photographer before moving into teaching the Fine Art course at Sheffield College of Art during the 1960’s. It was here that he became fascinated by the history of the medium and began his research into George Washington Wilson whilst studying for his Masters Degree in Victorian Studies at Leicester University. His commitment to photographic history led to his appointment at the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television in Bradford, where he was responsible for the installation of a new Kodak Museum, which opened in 1989. Seven years later, he took early retirement to pursue his researches into mid-Victorian photography, specializing in the emergence of early processes in Britain 1839-1865. Following a number of research fellowships within major collections in Canada and America he was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow at De Montfort University, where he is now Professor Emeritus. In 2014 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University of Derby in recognition of his significant contributions to photographic history. Brian May, founder, member, songwriter and guitarist with the rock band Queen, and co-creator of the internationally successful rock theatrical, We Will Rock You, is also a Doctor of Astrophysics, a leading campaigner for animal rights, and a lifelong 3-D photography enthusiast. Most recently, he has become a successful publisher, dedicated to sharing his vast collection of Victorian stereo photographs with the world through the books released by The London Stereoscopic Company (a fond recreation of the highly successful company of the same name founded in 1854). Brian currently tours with Queen for much of the year with Adam Lambert as lead vocalist, as well as composing, recording and performing in collaboration with West End star Kerry Ellis, an original luminary of the cast of We Will Rock You. His many other recent projects include working on 3-D 360-degree virtual reality movies, and the movie, Bohemian Rhapsody, the award-winning biopic of Freddie Mercury. Brian lives in London with his wife, his partner for over thirty years, actress Anita Dobson.