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Photo by Martin Munkacsi, Fred Astaire, LIFE, 1936

Martin Munkacsi

Fred Astaire, LIFE, 1936

Gelatin silver print

"Never pose your subjects. Let them move about naturally." 

Martin Munkacsi (1896-1963) was a Hungarian photographer who rapidly gained international recognition and critical acclaim.

He was a writer and reporter before becoming a full-time professional photographer. His early work captured speed and movement in a style that framed the modern era. He turned to fashion in the late 1920's to execute assignments for Harper's Bazaar. Munkacsi’s imagery revolutionised fashion photography. He was described as "the kinetic man" because, in a time where most fashion photo shoots were performed in static posture and in studios, Munkacsi preferred to capture moments of motion at locations outside the studio, like beaches. This trend is a legacy that remains popular today.

We can see his work in such collections as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the George Eastman House in Rochester, and the International Center of Photography and the MoMA  in New York.

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