While we were visiting the Jewish Museum, one of the exhibitions showing in the “voids” was dedicated to the works of Fred Stein, a Jewish photographer who was born in Dresden in July 1909. The son of a rabbi and a teacher, he was an active socialist, a member of the Marxist Socialist Workers’ Party of Germany (SAP). He studied law, but with the rise of the Nazis he was forced out of his job in the State Prosecutor’s Office and forbidden from completing his studies for a PhD. He fled to Paris with his wife, Lilo, where, unable to practice law he started photographing the City with a Leica camera and soon became established as a photographer.
When the Germans invaded France he was captured and interned, but he escaped and, with Lilo and their young daughter, managed to flee via Marsaille to New York, securing passage on one of the last ships to leave France for on “danger visas.” Settling in the city, he carried on photographing street scenes and worked for photo agencies, his pictures appearing in papers and journals such as the New York Times and Time magazine. He obtained American citizenship in 1952
The exhibition featured 130 black-and-white photographs covering his time in both Paris and New York.
He was a talented “Street photographer” producing some cleverly composed images of both Paris and New York.
I like how he has captured these interesting patterns created by water rubbing of the pavement of a deserted street in Paris.
He had a talent for composition. I like the way he’s used the curving bridge to frame the buildings
He included people in his photographs. A clever use of a silhouette and reflections in this photgraph.
In later life, when it was more difficult for him to get out and about, he turned to portrait photography, persuading a wide range of celebrities, artists and intellectuals to pose for him.
This subject needs no introduction.
An excellent exhibition with some really interesting photographs that we were lucky enough to stumble upon by chance.
Fred Stein Fine Cut from Imaginary Media Artists on Vimeo.