The °CLAIR Gallery is collaborating on a new monograph that celebrates the legacy of Rudi Weissenstein’s photography. A Dreamer – Rediscovering an Archive is being published by Kehrer Verlag and °CLAIR Gallery curator Anna-Patricia Kahn is serving as the book’s principal editor. Weissenstein (1910–1992) was the most prominent chronicler of everyday life in the young state of Israel and his photographs are essential to understanding the country’s social history.
Born in what is today the Czech Republic, Weissenstein studied photography in Vienna and then went on to work as a press photographer. He emigrated to Palestine in 1936 where he met and married Miriam Arnstein (1913–2011). The couple took over management of the Pri-Or PhotoHouse in Tel Aviv in 1940 and developed it into a renowned Israeli cultural institution.
“The genius of Rudi Weissenstein is that he understood how ordinary interludes were essential to the broader arc of history and was able to render them with exquisite beauty,” says °CLAIR Gallery director Anna-Patricia Kahn. “His photography is not just a treasure for a nation but for humanity as a whole.”
The PhotoHouse is now run by Weissenstein’s grandson Ben Peter and its archive holds more than one million negatives. As the archive celebrates its 80th anniversary, it is undergoing an international renaissance. Many of its highlights are being published in Rudi Weissenstein. A Dreamer – Rediscovering an Archive for the first time.
Kehrer Verlag is one of the world’s leading publishers of photography and fine arts books. Based in Heidelberg, they are the official German partner of the European Publishers Award for Photography.