New to St Louis–the International Photography…Museum



“Delete it immediately!” Sarah said to the young man who had just taken a surreptitious photo in the Kraus House.  Photography, our tour guide insisted, was strictly forbidden inside.  This will be a hard rule to enforce since photography has become almost an hourly activity for many in the Selfie Age.  Labor intensive and time-consuming until quite recently, photography was born way back in 1839.  The debate about whether it’s something you do to preserve family images and vacation memories or an art form is pretty much over.  A new museum in St. Louis, the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum, celebrates “the evolution of the art (Japanese-like Washington Park, 1954, by André Kertesz) and science (X-rays, the Hubble, etc.) of photography”.

Actually it’s more appropriate to say, “New to St Louis.”  In 1965 the Professional Photographers of America established a foundation that resulted in the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California, 12 years later.  In 1985 its growing collection relocated to Oklahoma City. Recently, 5 moving trucks containing its 6,000 cameras and 30,000 photographs travelled to St Louis and the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum opened in October, 2013 at 3415 Olive Street in its expanding arts district.

Why St. Louis?  There are several answers.  The best is the more than a dozen accredited college and university photography programs here.  The St. Louis Camera Club, according to Enlighten, IPHF’s journal, is one of the oldest and largest in the United States.  A current but temporary show celebrates local photographers.  IPHF will draw from its 5-truck photo and camera collection to exhibit for longer times.  A list of camera artists you’re likely to see is available at under Hall of Fame, which lists more than 60 inductees but not my favorite, Garry Winogrand.  Yet. is also a great source of info about museum hours, what’s currently on display, etc.  The hours are, by the way, relatively short.  IPHF is free entry, non-profit, and already 5 Compass.

Part of IPHF’s manifesto is “to celebrate the achievements of the inventors, pioneers, and pivotal artists throughout the history of photography.”  It’s doing that exceedingly well.  Welcome to St. Louis.




About roadsrus

Since the beginning, I've had to avoid writing about the downside of travel in order to sell more than 100 articles. Just because something negative happened doesn't mean your trip was ruined. But tell that to publishers who are into 5-star cruise and tropical beach fantasies. I want to tell what happened on my way to the beach, and it may not have been all that pleasant. My number one rule of the road's disaster is tomorrow's great story. My travel experiences have appeared in about twenty magazines and newspapers. I've been in all 50 states more than once and more than 50 countries. Ruth and I love to travel internationally--Japan, Canada, China, Argentina, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, etc. Within the next 2 years we will have visited all of the European countries. But our favorite destination is Australia. Ruth and I have been there 9 times. I've written a book about Australia's Outback, ALONE NEAR ALICE, which is available through both Amazon & Barnes & Noble. My first fictional work, MOVING FORWARD, GETTING NOWHERE, has recently been posted on Amazon. It's a contemporary, hopefully funny re-telling of The Odyssey. View all posts by roadsrus

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