Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Brassaï, pseudonym of Gyula Halász (1899-1984), is considered one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century. Halász was born in the Transylvanian town of Braşov, Romania, to a Hungarian father and an Armenian mother. At age three, his family moved to live in Paris for a year, while his father, a Professor of Literature, taught at the Sorbonne. As a young man, Gyula Halász studied painting and sculpture in Budapest, before joining a cavalry regiment of the Austro-Hungarian army, where he served until the end of the I World War. In 1920 Halász went to Berlin, where he worked as a journalist and studied at the Academy of Fine Arts.

In 1924 he moved to Paris where he would live the rest of his life. Living amongst the huge gathering of artists in the Montparnasse Quarter, he took a job as a journalist. Halász's job and his love of the city, whose streets he often wandered late at night, led to photography. He later wrote that photography allowed him to seize the Paris night and the beauty of the streets and gardens, in rain and mist. Using the name of his beloved birthplace, Gyula Halász went by the pseudonym Brassaï, which means from Braşov.

Source: Wikipedia

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