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Review: Jaromír Funke and Avant-Garde Photography at the National Gallery

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Updated: Friday, December 27, 2013

The Washington Post's Blake Gopnik reviews "Jaromír Funke and the Amateur Avant-Garde" at the National Gallery of Art.

Jaromír Funke, born in 1896 in the Czech town of Kolin, started taking pictures in the early 1920s, as part of his era's flourishing amateur photography movement. Most amateurs in the newly independent Czechoslovakia were dedicated to perfecting photographic craft and to making attractive, unchallenging, "poetic" work. Funke, a law student, started out there, too: He could do soft focus as well as anyone. What makes him worthy of a National Gallery show, however, is his precocious conversion to the tougher ideals of photographic modernism, as perfected at the Bauhaus in Germany and around Alfred Stieglitz in the United States.

Read the complete review in The Washington Post.

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