28Oct2018 15:00 - 16:00


On Sunday 28th of October artist Pim Zwier gives a lecture about the technique of colour separation used by photographer Sergey Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii in the beginning of the twentieth century.

Colourful phantom images

Between ± 1905 and 1915 the Russian photographer Sergey Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii used the photographic technique of colour separation to document the Russian Empire. The colour separation process is traditionally based on three black and white photos: one made with a red filter, one with a green filter, and one with a blue filter. Prokudin-Gorskii exposed the three photos one after another, with an interval of a few seconds. Anything that moved in between exposures would – unintentionally – reveal deviating colours, coloured fringes or turn into colourful phantom images in the later combined image.


High official in colourful garb, Bukhara, Turkestan (1911) Sergey Prokudin-Gorskii


In his lecture Pim Zwier talks about his fascination for the deviating colours and 'phantom images'. Similar to Prokudin-Gorski's early colour photographs of Russia, Pim has started collecting images of Russian landscapes, buildings and portraits in colour separation for his project Stilstand. Whereas in Prokudin Gorskii photographs the colour deviations and phantom images are technical imperfections, Pim Zwier deliberately chooses a variable interval between exposures.

About the author

This lecture is given as part of our current exhibition The world in colouron display until January 6th. Pim Zwier obtained his Master of Fine Arts at the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam in 2003. He makes documentaries, short films and installations and also works as a curator. His work hovers between documentary, experimental film and media art. 

Practical information

The lecture is free once you have entered the museum (for students UvA and museumcardholders museumentrance is free). To attend this lecture, please subscribe via the button below. 

Published by  Allard Pierson Museum