Hans Silvester | Tsiganes et Gitans

Posted: January 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Film, Photography

LE GUITARISTE MANITAS DE PLATA VERS 1970 © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

LE GUITARISTE MANITAS DE PLATA VERS 1970 © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MERLE © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MERLE © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-ME R© Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-ME R© Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

GITANS PENDANT LES VENDANGES © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

GITANS PENDANT LES VENDANGES © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans

FRANCE, SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA-MER © Hans Silvester, Tsiganes et Gitans


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Josef Koudelka | Gypsies

Posted: October 28th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Books, Film, Photography, Quotes

Finally.

After 35 years, Koudelka’s amazing Gypsies has been released in a new edition by Aperture. With 30 never before seen images and a design that reflects Koudelka’s original intentions, the book is a gorgeous testament to the life of the Roma between 1962 and 1971 in Bohemia, Moravia, Slovakia, Romania, Hungary, France and Spain. After being out of print for so many years, I can finally stop my ceaseless hunting in used bookstores, sit back on the couch, and let Koudelka’s eye take me through the lives of the Roma 40 years ago.

Personally, I have had the good fortune of always being able to do what I wanted, never working for others. Maybe it is a silly principle, but the idea that no one can buy me is important for me. I refuse assignments, even for projects that I have decided to do anyhow. It is somewhat the same with my books. When my first book, the one on the gypsies, was published, it was hard for me to accept the idea that I could no longer choose the people to whom I would show my photos, that any one could buy them.

- Josef Koudelka

Slovakia, 1967. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

Slovakia, 1967. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

If a picture is good, it tells many different stories.

- Josef Koudelka

Bohemia, 1966. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

Bohemia, 1966. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

I was never paid for anything in Czechoslovakia, so it was easy to accept not being paid in the West. Also, I was used to a lower living standard.

- Josef Koudelka

France, 1970. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

France, 1970. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

For me, the most beautiful thing is to wake up, to go out, and to look. At everything. Without anyone telling me “You should look at this or that.” I look at everything and I try to find what interests me, because when I set out, I don’t yet know what will interest me. Sometimes I photograph things that others would find stupid, but with which I can play around. Henri as well says that before meeting a person, or seeing a country, he has to prepare himself. Not me, I try to react to what comes up. Afterwards, I may come back to it, perhaps every year, ten years in a row, and I will end by understanding.

- Josef Koudelka

Spain, 1971. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

Spain, 1971. From the book, Koudelka: Gypsies. © Josef Koudelka, Magnum Photos

When I travel, I don’t even know where I am going to sleep, I don’t think of the place where I will lie down until the moment I roll out my sleeping bag. It’s a rule that I’ve set for myself. Because I told myself that I must be able to sleep anywhere, since sleep is important. In the summer I often sleep outdoors. I stop working when there is no more light, and I start again in the early morning. I do not feel this to be a sacrifice, it would be a sacrifice to live otherwise. As for my points of reference, I don’t know what they would be.

- Josef Koudelka


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Josef Koudelka | Prague Spring

Posted: October 22nd, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Film, History, Photography, Quotes

Josef Koudelka told Sean O’Hagan of the Guardian that it was a year after the Soviet invasion of Prague when he was in London traveling with a theater group, that he first saw his images published. He had come out of the hotel and some members of the group were looking at his photos in The Sunday Times, credited to the initials P.P. (Prague Photographer), a pseudonym he used out of fear of reprisal.

They showed me the magazine where it said that these pictures had been taken by an unknown photographer from Prague and smuggled out of the country. I could not tell anyone that they were my photographs. It was a very strange feeling. From that moment, I was afraid to go back to Czechoslovakia because I knew that if they wanted to find out who the unknown photographer was, they could do it.

Thus began one of the most important and prolific photographic careers in the last fifty years and a period of freedom and wandering for Koudelka who said that “for 17 years I never paid any rent.”

Koudelka turned to photography in 1967, abandoning a career in aeronautical engineering. He started shooting gypsies and theater groups, until the night of August 21st a year later when the Soviets invaded Prague. He had never documented a major event before. He took to the streets to capture this singular and historic moment. In that seven day period, Koudelka took over 5,000 photographs on the streets of Prague, getting shot at once and being pursued through crowds by soldiers. He was 30 years old.

The photos anonymously reached Magnum Photos in New York and later earned him the Robert Capa award.

The mother of my son, an Italian lady, she once told me, ‘Josef, you go though life and get all this positive energy, and all the sadness, you just throw it behind you and it drops into the bag you carry on your back. Then, when you photograph, it all comes out.’

-Josef Koudelka

You know, people say, ‘Oh, Josef, he is the eternal outsider,’ but on the contrary I try always to be an insider, both as a photographer and as a man. I am part of everything that is around me.

-Josef Koudelka

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Invading Warsaw Pact troops in front of the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Invading Warsaw Pact troops in front of the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, Aug. 21, 1968.

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, Aug. 21, 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968.

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, Aug. 21, 1968.  © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, Aug. 21, 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968.  © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The invasion by Warsaw Pact troops, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—In front of the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—In front of the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Warsaw Pact tanks invade Prague, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The body of a young Czech, killed for having tried to drape his flag over a Russian tank, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The body of a young Czech, killed for having tried to drape his flag over a Russian tank, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—A poster in a window with a dove stabbed through the middle, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—A poster in a window with a dove stabbed through the middle, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The Czechoslovakian flag, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—The Czechoslovakian flag, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Near the radio headquarters, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Vinohradska Avenue, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—Vinohradska Avenue, August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia—August 1968. © Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos


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