Photolab moved to west Berkeley in 1991 and the
Photolab Gallery was born.
Since then we have exhibited over 120 photographers, each for 5 to 6
weeks. Many of these photographers have gone on to professional
representation, to publish books or to continue exhibiting. The exhibits
reveal the depth of variation in the world of photography, from stereo
photography, pinhole photography, traditional color photography,
traditional and modern black and white silver photography and now
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Photolab started out
in the 1970s as a rental darkroom space located on Alcatraz
Avenue in South Berkeley near the border with Oakland. Black and white photography was
making a come back and the business grew in response to the
demand for services.
Photolab developed a niche market combining fine art sensibilities, commercial photo lab equipment and detail oriented customer service. This special combination drew the attention of wedding and portrait photographers and other fine art photographers, including Andre Kertez.
In 1989 we (which actually means, Photolab owner, Andrea McLaughlin) started studying Photoshop at PhotoMetro, in San Francisco. That was back when Photoshop had no version number and there was no really good way to get images out of the computer! Andrea still has her first print made on a computer with Photoshop 1.0.
In 1991 Photolab moved into a new facility that is now its
current location on 5th Street, in West Berkeley.
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