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Christer Strömholm, Nana, Place Blanche, Paris 1961 © Christer Strömholm/Strömholm Estate, 2014
Alfred Eisenstaedt, VJ Day, Times Square, New York 14. August 1945 © Alfred Eisenstaedt, 2014, Leica Camera AG
Heinrich Heidersberger, Laederstraede, Kopenhagen 1935 © Institut Heidersberger
Fred Herzog, Man with Bandage, 1968 Courtesy of Equinox Gallery, Vancouver © Fred Herzog, 2014
Nick Út, The Associated Press, Napalm-Angriff in Vietnam, 1972 © Nick Út/AP/Leica Camera AG
Henri Cartier-Bresson


WestLicht. Museum for Photography
04.12.2015 – 21.02.2016

“The Leica is the extension of my eye.” Henri Cartier-Bresson

EYES WIDE OPEN! tells the history of a revolution. The invention of the Leica 100 years ago was the dawn of a new era in photography, the view on the world radically changed. The compact size, high performance lens, quiet mechanics and the innovative use of 35mm film allowed for flexible, dynamic photographing, extreme perspectives and a spontaneity never seen before. This new speed, freedom and effortlessness catered to the needs of an accelerated age and inspired photographers worldwide.

Robert Capa’s falling soldier, the man jumping the puddle by Cartier-Bresson, the kissing couple in Times Square by Alfred Eisenstaedt, the Vietnamese fleeing from Napalm by Nick Út – all these iconic pictures have been taken with a Leica, and each of them has ingrained itself in collective memory.

EYES WIDE OPEN! illuminates the history of Leica photography from the very beginnings to the present day. Masterpieces by internationally renowned Leica photographers are accompanied by selected camera models from 100 years of Leica technique. The show displays works by Alexander Rodtschenko, Ilse Bing, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, Christer Strömholm, Bruce Davidson, Inge Morath, William Eggleston, René Burri, Susan Meiselas, Thomas Hoepker, Bruce Gilden and many more.
In Vienna the touring exhibition will be jointly presented by WestLicht Museum  and OstLicht Gallery. While WestLicht will house the classical sections of the exhibition, OstLicht will display the contemporary part. All works presented at OstLicht are available for purchase.

The exhibition is curated by Hans-Michael Koetzle. The accompanying lavishly illustrated book has been published by Kehrer Verlag, with texts by Alejandro Castellote, Michael Ebert, Peter Hamilton, Anton Holzer, Thomas Honickel, Hans-Michael Koetzle, Franziska Mecklenburg, Rebekka Reuter, Ulf Richter, Christoph Schaden, Emília Tavares, Enrica Viganò, Bernd Weise and Thomas Wiegand.

Eyes Wide Open! 100 Years of Leica
Ed. by Hans-Michael Koetzle
564 pages, 1,200 illustrations
Kehrer Verlag, EUR 98,-

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