About Bill Brandt Archive

Bill Brandt is widely considered to be one of the most important British photographers of the 20th century.
Born in Hamburg, Germany, son of a British father and German mother, Brandt grew up during World War I. Through Ezra Pound, Brandt was introduced to Man Ray, who he assisted in Paris in 1930.

In 1933 he moved to London and began documenting British society. This kind of documentary was uncommon at that time. Brandt published two books, The English at Home (1936) and A Night in London (1938). He was a regular contributor to magazines Lilliput, Picture Post, and Harper's Bazaar. He documented the Underground bomb shelters of London during The Blitz in 1940, commissioned by the Ministry of Information.

During World War II, Brandt focused on every kind of subject - "Camera in London" (1948) - but excelled in portraiture and landscape. In 1945 he began a celebrated series of nudes. His major books from the post-war period are Literary Britain (1951), and Perspective of Nudes (1961), followed by Shadow of Light (1966).