Posts Tagged ‘Ernst Haas’

Magical color lights of a New York City night

January 25, 2016

Vienna-born photographer Ernst Haas turned his camera to New York City’s skyscrapers and suspension bridges, creating a kaleidoscope of blurry color in this painterly 1970 image, Lights of New York.

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Haas started his career as a photojournalist for Life, Vogue, and other magazines. In 1962, he was celebrated with a retrospective show of his color photography at the Museum of Modern Art.

Over the years he captured a postwar, midcentury New York in all its poetic, weird, magical glory.

A photographer’s full-color midcentury city

September 23, 2013

As a young man in World War II-ravaged Austria, photographer Ernst Haas made a name for himself with a series of images of Austrian women waiting for their husbands to return from a POW camp.

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“The emotionally wrenching shots caught the eye of Robert Capa, who invited him to New York to join his newly formed Magnum [a photo cooperative] alongside Cartier-Bresson and other eminent founders,” states The Jewish Chronicle Online.

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[Above: Clouds and Skyline, New York, 1957]

Arriving in the U.S. in 1951, he shot ad campaigns as well as haunting images of postwar America.

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He also turned his camera on New York City, capturing fleeting moments of the abstract beauty of the city’s street life and landscapes. [Central Park, below, in 1952, published in Life magazine]

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“Rejecting the prevailing black-and-white aesthetic, Haas embraced colour as early as 1949, which earned him the honour of becoming the first photographer to have a solo show of colour work at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York in 1962,” states The Jewish Chronicle Online.

Ernsthaasphoto[Above: Reflections, Third Avenue, 1952]

“He even explored the visual effects of movement, blurring the colours to look like they had been applied with paint.”

Haas’ pioneering photos have been collected in a 2011 book, Ernst Haas: Color Correction.

Like Saul Leiter and other photographers who shot New York in full-on color during the same period, roughly the 1950s through the 1970s, they show us a magical, reflective, transient city.

[Ernst Haas, left]