Clemens Kalischer immigrated with his parents to Paris from his native Bavaria in 1933, when Hitler came to power, and then to the United States in 1942. After studying photography at Cooper Union and the New School for Social Research, he worked as a photojournalist for the French Press news agency and for Coronet magazine. By 1949 he was a successful freelance photographer and photojournalist, with work published in such magazines and newspapers as the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, Fortune, Du, and in the alternative press as well, including In Context and Common Ground. Kalischer’s architectural photographs have appeared in Architectural Forum, Urban Design International, and Progressive Architecture. He has operated the Image Gallery in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, for more than thirty years, and maintains an archive of some 500,000 stock photographs, supplied to publications worldwide. As both photographer and teacher, he works extensively with institutions such as Bennington and Hampshire colleges, Georgetown, and Harvard. Kalischer has been an active member of One by One, an international dialogue group for survivors and perpetrators of the Holocaust that seeks emotional healing.
Kalischer’s work extends the tradition of photojournalism inspired by Henri Cartier-Bresson and André Kertész. His recent interest in agriculture, architecture, education, the environment, music, religion, and socioeconomic matters, however, adds a level of personal dedication to his images that pushes his body of work beyond its aesthetic precedents.
My primary goal as an artist is to create a moment between me and the subject, no matter who or what it is, that reflects my own understanding of eternalness, no more and no less. I also do not offer commissioned work and follow only my own directions. Furthermore, my art is not politically motivated or socially critical, I’m only trying to create aesthetic images for the sake of aesthetics.
Born in Germany to a family of scholars, Genthe was a recent Ph.D. in classical philology when he came to the United States in 1895 to work for two years as a tutor. On his days off, he walked the streets of Chinatown in San Francisco, where he began to photograph. After publishing some of these images in local magazines, Genthe decided to open his own studio, specializing in portraits of prominent locals and visiting celebrities. Genthe’s work and studio were destroyed in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and resulting fire–save for the Chinatown images that had been stored in a bank vault. He published those early images in the 1909 book Pictures of Old Chinatown. After the fire, Genthe re-established his studio in San Francisco and in 1908 spent six months photographing in Japan. In 1911 he moved to New York, where he continued to work as a successful portrait and pioneering dance photographer. With New York as his new home base, Genthe also traveled and photographed throughout Europe and the United States
My primary goal as an artist is to create a moment between me and the subject, no matter who or what it is, that reflects my own understanding of eternalness, no more and no less. I also do not offer commissioned work and follow only my own directions. Furthermore, my art is not politically motivated or socially critical, I'm only trying to create aesthetic images for the sake of aesthetics.
Josef Breitenbach created a unique visual vocabulary by incorporating both traditional and experimental processes within a variety of genres throughout his career. Raised with a profound respect for the history of art and culture, he worked with a conscious understanding and appreciation for many different styles of artistic expression, including Modernism, Surrealism and even Pictorialism. Breitenbach explored form and abstraction as well as the sensual and psychological side of his subjects. His photographs exist as aesthetic objects that are also artifacts of a highly innovative period of our history.
Breitenbach was most interested in using photography and color for their transformative and expressive potential. He was not bound by the traditional notions of what a photograph should be. He employed a variety of techniques, sometimes combining them; they included: camera-less photography, montage, toning, bleaching and hand-coloring.
Josef Breitenbach was born in Munich to a wine merchant family in 1896. He studied philosophy and art history at Ludwig-Maximilian University and was a left wing political activist early in his career. Breitenbach was self-taught and made his first pictures in 1927 while traveling for the wine business. He opened his first photography studio in 1930 in Munich where he ran a successful business photographing prominent actors, cabaret performers, writers and political figures. When Hitler became Chancellor in 1933, Breitenbach fled to Paris, where he came into contact with the Surrealist movement. Though he did not identify himself as a Surrealist, Breitenbach’s work was included in important Surrealist photography exhibitions alongside photographs by Man Ray, Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Eli Lotar and Roger Parry.
Breitenbach was interned in 1939, escaped via Marseille in 1941, and arrived in New York City in 1942. He came to the attention of Walker Evans, who published his work in Fortune. In the summer of 1944, at the invitation of Josef Albers, Breitenbach taught photography at Black Mountain College. In 1946 he became a United States citizen and joined the faculty at Cooper Union and later The New School. Breitenbach continued to create distinctive and innovative work, including a striking group of camera-less photographs. These works hover in the liminal space between Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism.
Emmy Andriesse (1914-1953) is one of the most important 20th century women photographers, best known for her unforgettable portrayal of Amsterdam’s Hunger Winter of 1944-1945, now emblematic of civilian suffering during the Second World War. Andriesse was born into a liberal Dutch Jewish family. She was trained a the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague under the aegis of Gerrit Kiljan and Paul Schuitema, who pioneered the “New Photography, based on the Bauhaus principles – as well as encouraging students to experiment with its role as a documentary medium.