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Ed Van Der Elsken

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Ed Van Der Elsken

Considered as the Dutch ‘enfant terrible’ of photography, the late Ed Van Der Elsken has made his mark both as a photographer and a film director.

Born in Amsterdam in 1925, his first photo book – the 1956 ‘Love on the left bank’ – catapulted him to fame. More than 20 photo books followed suit, most dealing with acquaintances and interesting personalities from all over the world.

His most famous books include those of his international exploits. His trip to Paris, France was catalogued in books ‘Parijs! Fotos,’ and ‘Elsken: Paris’ which he published in 1981 and 1985 respectively. Elsken’s trip to Japan, on the other hand, were captured in the picture books of ‘Elsken: Japan’ and ‘De Ontdetekking van Japan.’ The memoirs of his 1957 visit to Africa were published in the book ‘Africa Ed Van Der Elsken 1957.’ Van Der Elsken has made several films, including the 5-minute ‘Hands,’ which he created in 1960. His 1971 movie, entitled ‘De verliefde camera,’ was given the Straatsprijs voor de Filmkunst award. His last film before he passed away in 1990 is Bye, a 108-minute film which chronicled his battle against prostate cancer. With his many successful outputs, it comes as no surprise that the name of Van Der Elsken, a photography and film icon, continues to echo until today.

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