Ivan Kyncl

In 1980 political refugee Ivan Kyncl arrived in the UK with few belongings and his camera.
Within a few years his focused energy, empathy and visual approach created a style and standard of photography that captured the very essence of a performance through his unique ‘in the minute’ approach.
Ivan's gift lay not solely in his technique - the chiaroscuro, the swirl of movement, the glint in the eye - it was the ability to catch in a millisecond the essence of a scene or performance - the image sometimes of an entire play. He will, I am sure, one day be equalled, but not surpassed. He was the Cartier-Bresson of theatre photographers. Terry Hands CBE, Director

His photographic archive of over a million images represents one of the richest chronicles of the British stage in the late 20th century.

One of the greatest pleasures of watching Ivan at work was to witness his becoming a part of the production. The work was thrilling. A true artist and a great European, who used his fascinating life experience to make a treasured and personal collection of work that stands among the very finest representations of British Theatre. He was loved and is still missed. Caro Newling OBE, Theatre Producer.
Earlier this year The V&A mounted an exhibition ‘Ivan Kyncl: In the Minute ‘ to celebrate the legacy of Ivan Kyncl, by showcasing a selection of 60 photographs – one for each second in the minute.

View all images by Ivan Kyncl

Alan Rickman as Kiyomura Sei ;
Peter Bayliss as Uncle Kamihida ;
Directed by Yukio Ninagawa ;
at the Piccadilly Theatre ;
London, UK ;
Circa 1985 ;
Credit: Ivan Kyncl / ArenaPAL


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