The German Jewish photographer Gerda Taro (born Gerta Pohorylle in Stuttgart, to a family of Polish Jewish origin) has long been overshadowed by her companion, the legendary photographer Robert Capa.
However, that may soon change. Taro (1910- 1937) was the first female war photographer, capturing powerful images of the Spanish Civil War, and was sadly also the first female photographer to be killed in a combat zone. Just as Capa, a Hungarian Jew born Endre Ernő Friedmann, used a pseudonym to add “American” glamor to his photos, so his companion assumed the name Gerda Taro for a Greta Garbo-like Hollywood mystique. And her Hollywood-like dreams will soon be fulfilled.
In October, the American Jewish director Michael Mann announced plans for a feature film, “Waiting for Robert Capa,” about the tragic Taro-Capa romance, scheduled for release in 2012. Adapted from a Spanish bestseller, “Esperando a Robert Capa” by Susana Fortes, which tellingly reproduces a photo of Capa alone on the cover, the film may finally give long overdue attention on Taro’s artistic gifts.
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