The Founders Scrapbook covers a vital period of ICP history. The scrapbook begins with two photographic images of the 1130 5th Avenue building, often affectionately referred to by ICP employees as the “old building” or the “building uptown” – the Willard Straight House. This scrapbook contains press materials, clippings, reviews, invitations and photographs assembled by the press department of the International Center of Photography during the time of the opening of the ICP in November 1974 and throughout the following year.
It is from this scrapbook that one can draw out some of the basic factual details of the institutional history of the ICP. It is a truly wonderful resource and can be accessed in the ICP library.
R TR15. I58 1971
We have a birthday: November 15th 1974 at 8pm. On the first page of the scrapbook there is the invite from the Board of Trustees requesting “the pleasure of your company at the opening of the International Center of Photography, Friday evening, November 15, 1974, eight o’clock to eleven o’clock”. Parties and openings went respectably late in those days.
There are also photographs – press prints – of the opening night and the persons in attendance on that evening which are pasted [bad non-archival glue] into this scrapbook. If you would like to come by the library to see this artifact in person and perhaps help us to ID some of the people in the images we would be grateful.
[Above] Cornell Capa the founding Executive Director of the ICP in excited conversation. Cornell was the founding trustee of the International Fund for Concerned Photography, Inc. established in 1966 and in 1974 the founding Director of the ICP.
The scrapbook really helps us to acknowledge that we had a charismatic founder with a great vision and a tremendous will to execute that vision. (He also had some help).
In November 1974 photography had found a home and the news was everywhere. The Center was the place to be. As if to emphasis that fact in the press clippings pasted on the page below the word Center is repeatedly underlined. Center. ICP is a school and a museum and a Center for the photographic community of the world.