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Aaron Scharf (1922 – 1993) was an American-born British art historian who contributed in particular to the history of photography in which he had developed an interest while studying at the Courtauld Institute.Jay, Bill (1993), 'Aaron Scharf:A verbal snapshot'. Creative Camera, April/May 1993. His investigation uncovered links between painting (and other artforms) and photography, and evidence for artists using photography for reference and other purposes, as well as the way photographers with aspirations as artists referred to painting in their work. He thus pioneered a new field of art history when Pop Art and other movements in the 1960s were reincorporating the medium of photography (which developed separately since the 1930s, and which hitherto art historians in general treated separately from paintingAs Richard Brettell notes: "With the exception of the writings of Aaron Scharf, Peter Galassis, Kirk Varnedoe, and a handful of other scholars, photography is completely omitted from the history of modern art particularly as it was written as a history of movements. In fact, photography played a considerable role in Impressionism, Nabis, Symbolism, Cubism, Dada, and Surrealism, moving hand-in-hand with painting and the graphic arts." (Brettell, Richard R. (1999) Modern Art, 1851-1929: Capitalism and Representation. Oxford University Press, Notes p.220)) and reference to popular photographic images, into mainstream artistic practice. Scharf popularised his study and discoveries with publication of his profusely illustrated hardback Penguin volume 'Art and Photography' (1968) and through his work at the Open University in producing innovative thematic educational videos on the history of photography and its relation to society.

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by Scharf, Aaron, 1922-1993
London : Studio Vista ; New York : Van Nostrand Reinhold Company, [1965] , ©1965
BookBook [text, still image, volume]
by Scharf, Aaron, 1922-1993
New York : Penguin Books, 1986 , ©1974
BookBook [text, still image, volume]
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