The legendary war photographer Robert Capa carried into his personal life the same remarkable vitality that characterizes his pictures. Driven from his native Hungary by political oppression, he was first recognized for photographing the Spanish Civil War. In 1938 he was in China recording the Japanese invasion. During World War II he was in London, North Africa, and Italy, and then in France covering D-Day on Omaha Beach, the liberation of Paris, and the Battle of the Bulge. When the new nation of Israel was founded in 1948 he was there. In 1954 he was in Vietnam, taking photographs until the moment he was killed.
Away from battle, Capa gather about him such famous people as Ernest Hemingway and his wife (the war correspondent Martha Gellhorn), Gary Cooper, Irwin Shaw, and Gene Kelly. Whelan shows Capa photographing the street life of Paris, crisscrossing America on assignment from Life, in Russia with John Steinbeck, in Italy with John Huston, on the Riviera with Picasso, and with Ingrid Bergman.
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Richard Whelan edited with Cornell Capa Robert Capa Photographs. Whelan studied art history at Yale University and has written extensively about art and photography. His books include Drawing the Line: Volume 1: The Korean War, 1950-1953.From Library Journal:
Robert Capa's war photos have such stunning immediacy it is hard to realize that those wars are long over. This authorized biography is published in conjunction with a retrospective exhibition at the International Center of Photography in New York. Capa, born in Hungary in 1913, later an American citizen, established a reputation as a daring war photographer with his photos of the Spanish Civil War, the Japanese invasion of China, World War II, and the Israeli War for Independence. He died in Indochina in 1954. The book records events and places, summarizes friendships. It includes a list of Capa's published photo-stories and an extensive bibliography. It is a good supplement to the photographs themselvesand Knopf is publishing a volume with 260 images. But although Whelan tells us a great deal about Capa's activities, the engaging, heedless, compassionate man is somehow missing. Illustrations not seen. J.R. Mosler, Hackettstown P.L., N.J.
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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