We are always thrilled to stumble across a project that gives a new refreshing approach to history. Australian photographer, Jane Long has taken a collection of old glass-plate images by Romanian photographer Costica Acsintem, and with the magic of PhotoShop, turned them in a lively and slightly surreal work of art.
We love what Jane Long has done with the photos, the collection with an adequate name Dancing with Costică was exhibited as part of the Ballarat International Foto Biennale last year.
All photos by Jane Long
From plain studio glass plates photographs, Long has created a surreal and fascinating world splashed with lively, vivid color and imaginative scenes. “I wanted to bring them to life. But more than that, I wanted to give them a story.” says the artist
Acsintem was a Romanian war photographer during WWI who also took photos professionally and personally after the war. With the start of the First World War, Costica Acsinte enrolled as a volunteer war photographer, developing his own photographs as well as the ones of the Romanian pilots and reconnaissance missions. He also developed films for the French reconnaissance missions and even for Russian pilots of the 1st and 3rd Aviation Groups. He activated for the photographic section of the Air Squadron 1 of the Romanian army.
His experiences were immortalized in his private photographic album which contains 84 pages and 327 photographs, the majority of which being accompanied by a short dactylographic description (the album also comprises drawings/sketches and newspaper clippings). Amongst the ones photographed one can find: Ferdinand I of Romania, Queen Marie of Romania, Carol II of Romania, Henri Mathias Berthelot or General Eremia Grigorescu.
Costică Acsinte’s legacy consists in about 5000 film negatives on glass plates, a smaller number of sheet film negatives and an unknown number of photographic prints. In 2013, what was left of his damaged vintage glass-plate photos was digitized by the Costica Acsinte Archive to preserve it, and it is this collection that Long drew on to create her wonderful photo series.