Around the World: The Grand Tour in Photo Albums (Princeton Architectural Press)

Barbara Levine, Kirsten Jensen (authors), Princeton Architectural Press (New York), 208 pages

2007

The beauty of the photo albums presented in Snapshot Chronicles continued with Around the World, a look at Barbara Levine’s terrific collection of travel albums and scrapbooks from the dawn of the contemporary tourist.

Around the World examines ten gorgeous albums from 1883 through 1929, arranged in chronological order. The journeys include massive global excursions, rugged adventures down the Nile, and early automobile vacations. Each traveller collected ephemera from the journey — picture postcards, maps, clippings — as well as a wealth of personal photographs. How these souvenirs were displayed is part of this book’s charm. Between each chapter are gold-colored “Gazette” pages which illuminate specific topics of interest, like “lodging,” “currency,” and “ship lore.”

A number of grand monuments seemed to be required viewing for the well-travelled. Spreads reveling in Egypt’s pyramids and France’s Eiffel Tower bind together a collection of views. To complement the intersecting views that thread throughout the albums, I connected a series of shipboard views of the distant horizon.

Around the World: The Grand Tour in Photo Albums