In 1975, Dr. Stanley B. Burns, an eye surgeon and vision specialist practicing in New York City, became interested in daguerreotypes and other early photographs. By 1978, Dr. Burns had acquired, through aggressive buying and connoisseurship, one of America's most important collections of early photography.
That year, Dr. Burns' collection was recognized by Time-Life as one of America's foremost new collections in their Encyclopedia of Collectibles. Dr. Burns wrote the chapter in the Encyclopedia on the new opportunities available in collecting vintage photographs.
In 1984, the world's first exhibition of medical photographs as art was presented at Buffalo's CEPA Gallery. It was curated from the Burns' Collection by noted curator Marvin Heiferman.
In 1988, the Burns Archive moved into its permanent headquarters, a New York townhouse built in 1890. Here, nineteenth century ambiance and decor, along with a backdrop of medical and photographic equipment, provide a proper setting for the display of vintage photographs.
In 1991, Burns Archive Productions, Ltd. was founded. This division of the collection does book packaging, from concept to camera-ready mechanicals. In addition to photographic projects, it produces cookbooks, fiction, historic works and other non-fiction.
By 1992, Art & Antiques has noted Dr. Burns as being amongst the "Top 100 Collectors
in America." The collection is rated as the number one private
collection of historic photography. In addition, Aperture rates the collection as one of the six most important private
photographic collections - of any type - in the world.
Photographs & Text © 1996-98 Burns Archive All Rights Reserved