In the man’s own words: “If your photos aren’t good enough, you’re not getting close enough.” The collection at the Daniel Blau gallery, ‘Europe 1943-1945’, shows Robert Capa’s work got as close to the front lines as any photojournalist since, and closer still to the people who fought and lived through the Second World War.
Showcasing some 58 vintage prints, the exhibition begins from the shores of Sicily, as the Hungarian photographer accompanied the Allied push through southern Italy as far as Naples. Then, leaving one front for another, Capa accompanied the second wave of American troops to hit Omaha beach, Normandy on D-Day in 1944. The final leg of this journey winding through war-torn France, documenting scenes of re-emergence and retribution.
Untarnished since their original development 71 years ago, the images capture not just the terrible cost and circumstance of war. They capture living moments, stills of everyday life, of liberation and joy, drama and death; pictures of lovers and families accompany pictures of action and destruction in this collection. The power and timelessness of Capa’s life work, within all of this, was his ability to frame and project the relationship between the subjects of his photographs with one another and with the viewer.
His sense of scene and moment has produced world renowned photojournalism, several of his best
known pieces on display at the Daniel Blau Gallery. The black and white collection, some of which have newly been recognised as Capa’s, range in price from £1,300 to £8000. Whether you plan to take a part of the man’s work home or not, experiencing the legendary social documentarian’s work for free, much of it on display for the first time, is a rare chance that shouldn’t be missed.
Europe 1943 – 1945
Until 10 May
Daniel Blau Gallery, 51 Hoxton Square, EC2A 3AY