Picture of the Day

posted by Bridget on 25 April 2012

It is curious why some images remain in your memory while others disappear.

In 2006 I saw the Barbican blockbuster photography exhibition, "In the Face of History; European Photgoraphers in the 20th Century". It was a very good show and while it had some of the old favourites, Capa, Cartier Bresson etc, the curators had included some less well known photographers.

Emmy Andriesse was not someone I had heard of before seeing the show. But since seeing her images of the Dutch Hunger Winter, 1944-1945 I have been haunted by the photographs and often conjure them up when thinking war photography.

It is strange as to why her images have stayed with me, when other photographs of equally disturbing events have gone from my memory. Andriesse managed to suggest in subtle and simple ways the utter horror and desperation of living without food or warmth.

emmy andriesse

An exhibition of her photographs will open on the 27th April at the Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam. If you live in Amsterdam or will be visiting the city between the 27th April and 30th September I thoroughly recommend a visit to the exhibition.

Curiously I am currently reading "Love and Fate" by Vasily Grossman and have just got to the part where Grossman so powerfully describes the journey of the Jews to the camps. While reading it I thought of Andriesse's photographs.

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