© Wolf Strache, Nov. 23, 1943, Berlin Kurfürstendamm
Wolf Strache considered this iconic image taken during WWII one of his best photographs and it has become a symbol of that time. The original negative was confiscated shortly after its production and Strache made another negative in the 1970s with which he made later prints. The sign advertising the film Reise in die Vergangenheit (Trip to the Past) makes the image all the more poignant. (+)
Wolf Strache was born in Greifswald in 1910 and lived in Stuttgart until his death in 2001. In 1934 he completed a study of economics in Munich. Subsequently, he worked as a freelance photo journalist in Berlin for magazines like 'Die neue Linie'; as from 1936, he also published illustrated volumes about Germany’s landscapes. He taught himself photography.
From 1932 to 1942 he worked in the photographic archives and picture service of the Reich’s Foreign Office. Afterwards, as a war reporter, he heroized the German air force in his photographs – complying with the spirit of Nazi propaganda entirely. He produced his most famous shot of a woman wearing a gas mask pushing a pram through a landscape of ruins in the destroyed city of Berlin.
After the war, he began to work in Stuttgart as a freelance photo journalist. As from 1951 he published the series “Die schönen Bücher” about landscapes, art and nature, and he also brought out the year book “Das Deutsche Lichtbild” from 1955 to 1975. He was presented with the Cultural Award of the DGPh (Deutsche Gesellschaft der Photographie) in 1979. (+)
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