History of Photography

Introduction History of Photography (Encyclopaedia Britannica)

A World History of Photography (by Naomi Rosenblum)

The Story Behind the Pictures 1827-1991 (by Hans-Michael Koetzle)

Photographers' Dictionary
(based on "20th Century Photography - Museum Ludwig Cologne")



Photographers' Dictionary

(based on "20th Century Photography-Museum Ludwig Cologne")




Boris Ignatovich

(1899 - 1976)

Boris Ignatovich is one of the outstanding photographers of the Russian avant-garde - the pioneers of photo journalism. He belonged to the Rodchenko and Lissitzky circle of artists and was closely affiliated and befriended with professional photographers like Alpert and Shaikhet, Skurichin and Shagin, Langman and Sterzer, Fridljand and Tules, Markov and Chalip, Petrusov and Kovrigin as well as Gruntal and Chlebnikov, the masters of subject- and document related photography.
For the avant-garde artist amongst the photographers of the 1920's there had been three different ways of becoming involved in photography. The first group started with painting and graphics and progressed to photography by working with polygraphy. The careers of Rodchenko and Lissitzky like those of the propaganda artists Gustav Kluzic and Sergej Senkin, the graphic artist and designer Nikolai Setelnikov and the architect and designer Georgij Zimin, who devoted himself to the photogram rather unexpectedly, followed this path. Others however began their professional career as photographers in photographic studios, alternatively through literature and journalism establishing contacts with writers, editors and working as journalists. Some professional writers also turned to photography. Photographs exist of writers like I. Ehrenburg, I. Ilf and S. Tretiakov.
Ignatovich was a journalist before becoming a photographer. During the autumn of 1918, he worked at the editor's office of the Lugansk magazine "Severo-Donezki Communist" and subsequently went to the Kharkov magazine "Krasnaja swesda". In 1920 he was appointed editor of the newly founded magazine "Krasnaja Bashkirija" and was sent as a delegate to the first Allunion congress of ROSTA workers. In 1921 he worked as chief editor for the magazine "Gornjak" (together with M. Mikov), where he published satirical poems by Majakovskij. Between 1922 and 1925 he was chief editor of the Leningrad humoristic magazines "Dresina", "Smechatsh" and "Busoter".
Ignatovich later remembered his first experiences with photography.

On the Construction Site, 1929


Shower, 1935


Milling-machine operator, 1929


Dinamo, 1930


At the Hermitage, 1930


Nikita Khruschev, 1936


Lunch in the Commune, 1928


Youth, 1937


At the stove, 1927


Spanner on the controls, 1929


 May Day, 1927


At the collective farms fair in Tbilisi, 1932


Boris Pasternak and Korney Chukovsky, 1935


Pig iron casting, 1937


VII Komsomol conference, 1935


At the Red Corner, 1928


Chess tournament, 1935


Brass band on the Red Square, 1935


Michael Zoschenko, 1923


At the Big Theater, 1935


Vladimir Mayakovsky on Red Square, 1928


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