The enigmatic Kati Horna

The photographer Kati Horna took beautiful and surreal images.

When she was just 25 years old, she was commissioned to capture photographs of the Spanish Civil War (1937). Her view and depiction of what was happening within communities at the time of the war are thought to have drawn a lot of attention to the human cost that happens away from the trenches and action.

By focusing on the struggles, poverty and battles that were happening on the streets at the same time as in the trenches, ‘a female lens’, she provided a human viewpoint and contributed to global attention being drawn to Spain at the time.

I’ve been working on the costumes for a play set during this time so was looking at her work without even knowing it. It was actually after seeing her more surrealist work that I really took note.

She had a tumultuous life (it seemed! Obviously I can’t know!) But she was born in the Republic of Hungary during war time there and was always political and used her camera as her tool and her weapon.

After living in Spain and Paris, she fled to Mexico, which became her adopted country, and worked in a more surreal style. She seemed to work prolifically across photography, magazines and architecture.

I don’t really know why the photos grab me so much. There is the story telling and the symbolism and the style.

I just think they are great and there isn’t much about her online that I can find- just one giant book that I will add to my list to ‘one day’ buy. I found the newer images here.

Just a nice visual treat! Enjoy.

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