"Josef Sudek: Portraits"
Although the Czech photographer Josef Sudek was mildly reclusive by temperament, and although his photography is commonly characterized as unpeopled (in favor of what he termed "the inanimate life of objects"), a sizable portion of his oeuvre is given over to portraits. In fact, the beginnings of Sudek's work are in portraiture, in his images of fellow patients at the veteran's hospital where he spent three years after the First World War. (It was here that Sudek's right arm was amputated after a battlefield injury, a misfortune which did not prevent him from using heavy, large-format cameras in the future.) Decades later, after he had cofounded the Czech Photographic Society in 1924 and established his signature neo-Romantic preoccupation with architectural Prague, he returned to the genre. Throughout the 1940s and 50s, Sudek photographed close friends, among them the poet and Nobel Laureate Jaroslav Seifert, many painters and writers, but also scientists, doctors, politicians,...