Photography: A History 1839-Now is a four-volume history of photography edited by Walter Guadagnini, translated from the Italian edition, La Fotografia. The four chronological volumes have previously been published separately, as The Origins 1839-1890, A New Vision Of The World 1891-1940, From The Press To The Museum 1941-1980, and The Contemporary Era 1981-2013.
The set contains more than 1,000 photographs, and more than 1,300 pages. The four books are housed in a luxurious box depicting the earliest extant photograph, an 1827 image by Joseph Niepce. Each volume features profiles of significant photographers (with portfolios of images from their published monographs) and photography exhibitions, written by Francesco Zanot. These are supplemented by longer thematic essays "shifting the focus from the individual works and events to a broader vision," timelines of photography and art history, and comprehensive bibliographies.
Beaumont Newhall wrote The History Of Photography, the first history of photography as an art form. Helmut Gernsheim's The History Of Photography covers photography's early development. Naomi Rosenblum's A World History Of Photography became the standard modern history of the subject. Mary Warner Marien's Photography: A Cultural History is the most recent, and most comprehensive, single-volume survey.