It used to be that photography was not for the faint of heart. Back in the 19thcentury, it required big, clunky equipment and an array of dangerous chemicals. It involved acceptance of trial and error, and what was fixed by light onto a negative was not discovered instantly, nor was it infinitely or quickly editable.

Fast forward to today’s penchant for point, shoot and send. The digital revolution has been great for most of us, but not for Isa Marcelli, whose recent love affair with plate-to-print photography can be seen in her first Moving Gallery exhibition, opening at the Garden of the Zodiac on July 12.

France-based Marcelli is fascinated with the possibilities of historical techniques of photography, including cyanotypes, tintypes, collodion processes, pinhole cameras and platinum-palladium printing.

Her portraits and landscapes are soft and lush, full of mystery, melancholy and poetry. They vary between degrees of romantic pictorialism and intriguing surrealism that will keep viewers engaged in inventing their own narratives.

The Moving Gallery’s Isa Marcelliis on view at the Garden of the Zodiac beginning Thursday, July 12 from 7-9pm and runs through September 2. The gallery, located at 1042 Howard Street in the Old Market Passageway, is open Tues-Sat from noon-8pm and on Sun from noon-6pm.

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