Modern Art Notes has an interview with Getty Museum curator emeritus of photographs Weston Naef that lays out reasons why pre-1872 photographs published by Eadweard Muybridge are likely the work of others. Naef notes that Muybridge had not learned photography when he returned to his native Britain from California in 1860. When he came back to California seven or eight years later he immmediately began publishing accomplished photographs. Yet, there is no record of his membership in any British photographic association, nor any surviving image attributed to him that depicts a British subject.
Naef believes that Muybridge, an entrepreneurial venture capitalist, acquired the rights to photographs from professionals such as Carleton Watkins, about whom Naef is a leading expert.
The revelation coincides with the most comprehensive exhibition ever assembled of work associated with Muybridge, “Helios: Easweard Muybridge in a Time of Change,” at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. to July 18.