Vladimir Lagrange was born in 1939 in Moscow. His interest in photography came from his parents: his father worked as a correspondent for the Pravda newspaper, and his mother was a photo editor. In 1959, he comes to work in the TASS photo chronicle as a student of a photojournalist, where he will spend four years, and then for a long time his professional life will be associated with the magazine Soviet Union.
Vladimir Lagrange is known as the “thaw photographer”, a time when the pictorial canon is changing: romantic young people come to replace courageous heroes in magazines and newspapers, and instead of hard work you could see walks around the city. Vladimir Lagrange was one of the first to understand what forms of expression a new generation is looking for. Vladimir Lagrange was one of the first to understand what forms of expression a new generation is looking for. He spoke to the youth with a new language, being himself a young professional, immersed in the life of the thaw.
In 1962, the exhibition “Our Youth” – one of the main events of the year for domestic reporters ─ opens Lagrange’s photo “Doves of Peace”, which the entire exhibition is built. In May 1962, the magazine “Soviet Photo” publishes this picture on a turn, and it will forever remain the “calling card” of the author. In May 1962, the magazine “Soviet Photo” publishes this picture on a turn, and it will forever remain the “calling card” of the author. The action in the frame takes place on Red Square, but Lagrange shifts accents from official symbols to human emotions, with the result that the whole system of perception works differently, even the Kremlin seems to be “unfrozen”.
In 1963, Lagrange began working in the magazine “Soviet Union” and will stay there for more than a quarter of a century. The magazine, which continued the work of the famous “USSR in construction”, largely created the myth of the USSR. Many doors opened in front of the journal’s correspondent, and Vladimir Lagrange drove the country up and down. In 1987, American publishers implement the large-scale project “One Day in the Life of the Soviet Union,” in which Vladimir Lagrange also participates as a guest author.
Vladimir Lagrange is one of the few authors who traveled abroad during the Soviet era. In 1964 he traveled to France. “I will not write here in detail about those impressions, attitudes, surprise that overwhelmed me,” said the photographer. He photographed a country which was unknown to him and an unusual everyday life, and after returning, overnight printed more than two hundred photographs, most of which were not published. In addition to France, the photographer traveled to Italy, Poland and Afghanistan, where he went to shoot already on the withdrawal of troops.
In 1991, the journal Soviet Union was closed. The era of the USSR has ended. Vladimir Lagrange first goes to Rodina magazine, and then to the Moscow bureau of the French agency Sipa Press and continues to shoot a social report. Despite the change in external circumstances, the photographer remains true to his profession.
The works of Vladimir Lagrange are presented in museums and private collections, his exhibitions were held both in Russia and abroad, and in 2002 the author was awarded the highest award of the professional guild of photographers and the Union of Journalists “Golden Eye of Russia”.