FRAGMENTS | Heinrich Hoffmann | Robert Capa
In 1925, just after Hitler's release from prison following the completion of dictating "Mein Kampf," photographer Heinrich Hoffmann captured images of Hitler preparing for a speech to the German people. During the session, Hitler had his recorded speeches playing in the background as he sought to analyze his body language. However, Hitler considered the pictures to be frivolous and instructed Hoffmann to destroy the negatives. Despite Hitler's orders, Hoffmann chose not to comply. After serving a four-year prison sentence, Hoffmann eventually published the photographs for the first time in his memoirs titled "Hitler was my friend" in 1955. It's worth noting that Hoffmann is credited with introducing Eva Braun to Hitler.
"Hitler would stride in, take his stance in front of the camera—you know, head stiff, chin drawn in, hand on his hip, everybody knows the pose. He had only three public poses: one hand on one hip, a hand on each hip, and arms folded. Then he would announce, ‘I am ready. Take my photograph.’ And no photographer would have dared to suggest, ‘My Führer, the public is bored with that pose. Would you be so kind as to try another?’
Hoffmann interviewed by Bernard Taper / October 27, 1950 / The New Yorker
In March 1935, esteemed war photographer Robert Capa traveled to Brussels approximately one week prior to the parliamentary elections. The voters were faced with a decision between two candidates: the fascist leader Leon DeGrel and the liberal candidate Paul Van Zeeland. Capa captured photographs that depicted Leon DeGrel before his defeat in the elections.
In 1932, Robert Capa journeyed to Copenhagen with the purpose of photographing the emergence of the Russian revolutionary figure, Leon Trotsky. Trotsky was delivering lectures that delved into the significance of the Russian Revolution, and Capa aimed to capture this pivotal moment through his photographs.