Ernst Haas (photographer)

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Ernst Haas (* 2. March 1921 in Vienna , † 12. September 1986 in New York ) was an Austrian - American photographer and early member of the photo agency Magnum Photos .


Ernst Haas found, by his own admission, as a child interest in photography and studied (after high school in Vienna) immediately after an aborted medical studies the subject photography at the Graphic Arts and Research Institute in Vienna. As a freelance photojournalist for magazines The film and today he photographed a number of photos of returning soldiers and invalids from. In 1947 the Red Cross used its reportage and photos to identify or bring together war victims, which was subsequently published in a feature in Life magazine . Haas then received an invitation from Robert Capa to join his newly founded photo agency Magnum . In 1950 Ernst Haas became a full member of Magnum .

From 1951 onwards, Haas experimented almost exclusively with color films . With the fascinating series of images "Images of a Magic City (New York)" , Haas provided never-before-seen impressions and reflections of a big city on the then new Kodachrome color film material: his first work in color. The Life magazine published the series in 1953 in two editions. His sports report "The Magic of Colors in Motion" also showed never-before-seen aspects of photography through motion blur and intentionally blurred images with extreme color contrasts caused by partially overlaid film material.

In 1958 Haas became Vice President of Magnum , and then President of the agency in 1960.

Ernst Haas' first solo exhibition took place in 1962 at the Museum of Modern Art . A touring exhibition sponsored by Kodak documented the Haas-produced film The Art of Seeing . In 1966, Haas became a participating member of Magnum . At the beginning of the 1970s, he realized several book projects that deal primarily with Japan and a Zen Buddhist and meditative imagery. It was around this time that the photographer turned away from sensational journalism and increasingly focused on quieter subjects. A lesser-known side of Haas' work are the American landscape photographs for the cigarette brand Marlboro , which contributed significantly to its image.

Haas liked to experiment with a wide variety of media: in 1964 he produced a series of images for the film The Bible by John Huston . In the 1970s he preferred to deal with audiovisual techniques, such as the Flower Show and the complementary picture portfolio Flowers (1983). Flower motifs were soon to become the main part of his late work.

Ernst Haas died unexpectedly on September 12, 1986 in New York from complications from a stroke ; shortly before that he had finished his multimedia picture show Abstracts .

The Ernst Haas Archives are in the care of Magnum Photos and the Haas Studio in New York City.

Publications (selection)

Haas has also worked for many renowned journals and magazines, including a. for Vogue , Look , Time or the Life magazine.

Lexical entry

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Biography of Estate Ernst Haas ,, accessed on April 8, 2016