FRAGMENTS | Ernst Haas
From 1935 to 1938, Ernst Haas, an Austrian Jewish photographer, pursued studies in art, philosophy, and science at a private school. However, the German invasion of Austria resulted in the school's closure, interrupting his education.
Following the closure of the school, Haas was sent to a German army labor camp, where he worked six hours a day in exchange for two hours of schooling. In 1940, he enrolled in medical studies, but due to changing laws that targeted individuals of Jewish heritage, he was compelled to withdraw after completing just one year.
Despite the disruptions caused by the war, Haas utilized his self-taught skills and embarked on a journey to study photography, which marked a significant turning point in his life.
Towards the end of the war, Haas documented the return of prisoners of war to Vienna, capturing the poignant expressions of women and mothers anxiously awaiting the return of their loved ones. This powerful series caught the attention of renowned photographers Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson, who invited Haas to the United States. In 1951, he immigrated there and left an indelible mark on the world of photography.
From the series "The Return of the Captives"