11th of January is an important day for Romanian photography. Today is the Photographic Art Day in Romania, a significant event during which we must stop for a brief moment and admire, remembering those who built the foundations of Romanian photography.
The first certified photographer in Romanian is considered Carol Popp de Szathmári, born on the 11th of January 1812 in Cluj, Austrian Empire. In 2010, this day was officially named Photographic Art Day in Romania; annually this day was celebrated through varried cultural and artistic events. Carol Popp de Szathmári studied Law at Cluj, but then quit and left for Rome, then Vienna to study fine arts.
He then returned to Romania, where he was a painter, and then, in 1848, he started experimenting with photography. In November 1848, he took the first photograph in Romania, by using an old photographic technique which used silver chloride as a developer agent and sodium cloride as a fixing agent. The process is called calotype. This is the first photograph in Romania which depicts a Cupid with broken arms and is located in the Prints Cabinet of the Academy Library.
Carol Popp is considered to be one of the first 10 photographers in Europe; he is also the first to make a war photo reportage during the Crimea War. He is considered to be the first photo-journalist in the world. In 1855 he got an award at the Universal Exibition from Paris for the images captured during the Crimea War.
He is considered to be the first certified photographer in Romania; he was the official photographer of Alexandru Ioan Cuza and Carol Ist.
This year, the Photographic Art Day in Romania is marked by the 20th edition of the International Photographic Art Saloon of Romania which will be opened on the 12th of January, at the Bucharest Museum.
It is considered the most important event of the romania photographic art, with a tradition of more than half a century. At the current edition 1960 photographs were registered from 240 photographers from 39 countries. The international jury – made up of well known professional photographers such as Virgilio Bardossi (Italy), Daniel Badescu ( Romania) and Balasi Csaba ( Romania) – accepted 400 photos and gave 38 medals of the International Federation of Photographic Art (IFPA) and of The Romanian Asociation of Artistic Photographers (RAAP). At the current edition of the event from the 53 Romanian photographers accepted, Nagy Lajos, got a golden IFPA medal for ”Running with the wind”, Alexandra Fira, was awarded a goldent RAAP medal for ”Autumn in my soul”, Stefan Chirobocea, got a IFPA mention for ”Autumn Pastel” and Bathory Zsigmond, a IFPA mention for ”Warm rocks”, as RAAP informs.