Andre Kertesz

BIOGRAPHY

1894-1985

Two world wars punctuated the artistic periods of André Kertész’s life.  An autodidactic photographer whose early subjects were Hungarian peasants, Kertész was serving in the army when a news magazine published his work.  A 1925 move to Paris brought success in print publications, an association with the Dadaists and portraits of celebrated figures — Colette, Chagall and Mondrian.  Solo exhibitions of Kertész’s emotionally charged work ensued.  The Nazi threat forced Kertész and his wife’s departure to New York.  Eventually the Art Institute of Chicago recognized Kertész with an exhibition in 1946, which liberated him from commercial contracts.  He was awarded a Commander of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 1974 and the Master of Photography Award from the International Center of Photography.  In 1984, The Metropolitan Museum of Art purchased 100 Kertész prints, its largest-ever acquisition of works by a living artist at that time.