William Dassonville

(AMERICAN, 1879 - 1957)

"Whether photography is or is not an art is no longer in question. It is," declared William Dassonville in 1902 at one of his lectures on photography as a fine art. He ran a commercial portrait studio in San Francisco, making landscapes as his artistic expression. In 1904 Dassonville became secretary of the California Camera Club, then the world's largest amateur photographer's organization, and also contributed to Camera Craft, the club's influential journal. In the 1920s Dassonville created a velvety surfaced photographic printing paper that was a favorite among Pictorialist photographers, though the formula is now lost. He sold his studio in 1924 in order to manufacture the paper full time. ~ J. Paul Getty Museum