Photography as a tool for documentation
During the second half of the 19th century the use of photography spread, not only as a tool for research, but also as an instrument for creating a permanent record of the human cultural experience, gaining universal acceptance as a new visual language. Giorgio Roster himself illustrated a report for the municipality of Florence on the city’s water supply with striking photographs of the Pollaccia wellspring in the Apuan Alps. The First National Exhibition of the History of Science held in Florence in 1929 provided significant acknowledgement of the efficacy and appeal of this new medium. Photographs of the exhibition rooms and the objects on display circulated widely and contributed to made clear the importance of valorizing Italy’s unique historical-scientific legacy, giving rise to an initiative that would lead to the creation of the National Museum of the History of Science—today the Museo Galileo.