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FRAGMENTS | Ernst Haas


Between the years 1935-1938, the Austrian Jewish photographer Ernst Haas studied art, philosophy and science at a private school until the German invasion of Austria led to the school's closure. Haas was sent to a German army labor camp and worked six hours a day in exchange for two hours of school. In 1940 he enrolled to medical studies, but managed to complete only one year of study before the laws were changed and forced him to withdraw due to his Jewish roots. Despite the fact that his studies were disrupted by the war, Haas made use of his self-taught skills and turned to study photography, which led to a turning point in his life. At the end of the war, Haas documented the return of the prisoners of war to Vienna, capturing the tense expressions of women and mothers who awaited the return of their loved ones. This series attracted the attention of Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson who invited him to the United States, where he immigrated to in 1951 and made his mark in the world of photography.

Images:

From the series The Return of the Captives