10 historic photographs an instant earlier


(…read in spanish) 
Written by: Kurioso Translated by: Marta Aulet. Email Marta: t.nykur@gmail.com

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Let’s play a game. Would you be able to recognize a historic picture from another one taken just a moment earlier? Most photographic icons leave behind others which are dismissed and mediocre but that still help to explain the events and put them in context. Forgotten photographs, B Sides, rescued to tell the whole truth or that simply make the stories around their famous big sisters more human. For fetishists of photography, nostalgics of icons or History lovers. Ready?

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The calm cop

August 15th, 1961. Berlin. A policeman in East Germany guards the recently erected wire fence that divides the two German blocs, the seed of the late Berlin Wall. In the background a group of citizens is chatting, seemingly oblivious to the authority’s uneasiness. On the west side, photographer Peter Leibing documents the building of the wall and captures the moment of tense calm inspired by the policeman’s pose, but he could have never guessed what he was about to photograph…


Just a few seconds later (click)

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To find out more…

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Crossing to the other side of History

August 8th, 1969. The world’s most famous band is about to advertise an album that, in the end, would be their last: Everest. The band would fly to the Himalaya to make a photographic book for the album’s illustration, but due to production issues they changed the title and the whole project, so they ended up taking a few quick shots in a street of London near the recording studio. Nobody was too happy about this last minute resolution. Photographer Ian McMillan captured the moments previous to the artists’ final pose…

Just a few seconds later…

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To find out more…

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A grateful fetus

December 1999. Dr. Joseph Brunner is about to carry out a routine surgery in Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville. A merely 21-week-old fetus diagnosed with spina bifida awaits the surgeon’s scalpel’s skillful move inside its mother’s womb. In the operating room, freelance photographer Michael Clancy is covering for USA Today a report on children suffering from this disease. He takes a few trivial shots of the operation and the room. Moments before opening the mother’s womb, the surgeon allows him to come closer to the operating table to capture a tiny detail

Just a few seconds later…

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To find out more

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Federico’s last shot

The 30’s. Battlefront in some European conflict. The most important war correspondent in the world is sent to cover the resistance’s activities first-hand. During one of the attacks he spots soldiers from his trench. Nothing foretells what was about to happen moments later to the militiaman on the left…

Just a few seconds later…

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To find out more…

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The small flag

February 23rd, 1945. Suribachi summit. Japan. The North American army occupies the hill at 10:20 in the morning. Lieutenant Harold G. Schrier is the patrol leader and has been ordered to place his transport ship’s flag (the USS Missoula) on the summit so it could be sighted from every neighboring beach. But the flag was too small. It was immediately ordered to bring a second flag of bigger proportions…

Just a couple of hours later…

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To find out more…

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The museum that withstood disaster

In the 20’s, Czech architect Jan Letzel built the most solid and modernist building in his career to hold a small Japanese town’s museum programme. His experience in anti-seismic structures came from the amount of projects he had carried out all over the East. However, he would have never imagined that his museum would still stand after the most devastating catastrophe ever caused by the hand of men…

Only a couple of months later…

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To find out more…

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A concert to remember

September 21st, 1979. Unforgettable night at the Palladium. The kings of British punk take their lawbreaking live to the other side of the ocean. New York, devoted, cheered their succees without hesitation. Photographer Pennie Smith covers the band’s tour and is crouched down beside the narrow stage that night. Suddenly, the bass player sets to bang his Fender Precision against the floor. The first blow caught the reporter unprepared. But the second blow became the most famous picture in the history of rock

And just a few seconds later…

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To find out more…

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The face of aids

1990. Aids is still synonym for death, fear and rejection. A taboo for most media. Journalist Therese Frare wants to make society aware of the sick people’s humanity and undertakes the monitoring of David Kirby, an activist that contracted aids in the 80’s and went back home to die close to his family. The reporter lives with them in the hospital and during the death throes taking shocking photographs, among them the most controversial one in the history of aids…

…A few days later.

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To find out more…

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Marching to death

February 1st, 1968. Bay Lop, member of the National Liberation Front, is being escorted without a course along a street in Saigon. Two days earlier the same liberation front had ignored a cease-fire by attacking a police station. The superintendent decides to carry out the public revenge himself under the gaze -and lenses- of North American photographer Eddie Adam…

…Just a few seconds later

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To find out more…

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Baptism by fire

July 11th, 1963. Lâm Văn Tức  is a buddhist monk and has been fighting against the Vietnamese goverment’s Christian persecutions. During his stay in Saigon he receives baptism through one of the oldest buddhist rituals that serve as a prelude to reincarnation. A companion assists him by pouring the sacred liquid…

..Just a few seconds later

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To find out more…

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The Magnum agency has more than a hundred proof sheets for historic photo sequences edited in this catalogue. Don’t miss it. Thanks to @Rcamposaez


Spanish Journalist Carlos del Amor made an excellent report on this compilation in TVE1 news. Thank you!

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Fuentes

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This entry is the last of the compilation trilogy on historic photographs or photography icons seen from a different perspective. Don’t miss the other two:

-Man is the only animal that trips twice over the same photograph

-Twelve black and white photographs that don’t tell the whole story

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2 comentarios

  1. It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button!
    I’d without a doubt donate to this fantastic blog! I guess for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your RSS feed
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    Responder
  2. Baptism by fire is not one of Buddhism’s oldest rituals, and it is only a prelude to reincarnation in that all death is a prelude to reincarnation. It is a ritual of Chinese origin that has only recently become popular through its flashiness.

    Responder

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