Yevgeni Khaldei - The Odyssey of Collecting: Photographs from Joy of Giving Something Foundation New York Tuesday, October 3, 2017 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist by a private collector, 1992
    Christie's, London, Photobooks, 31 May 2007, lot 104

  • Catalogue Essay

    Yevgeni Khaldei was one of the principle photojournalists of the Soviet era, and this maquette for the Russian-published monograph From Murmansk to Berlin includes his most iconic photographs of World War II, foremost among them Raising the Soviet Flag Over the Reichstag, Berlin. As a photographer for the TASS news agency, Khaldei documented the war from the June 1941 invasion of Nazi forces into Russia to its conclusion in 1945, and afterwards covered the postwar conferences of Stalin, Churchill, and Truman, and the trials at Nuremburg. By 1945, at the age of only 28 years, he had created the encyclopedic photographic document of Russia’s engagement in World War II, encapsulated within this unique maquette.

    At the time of the German invasion, Khaldei was already working for TASS and had become adept at producing the sanitized images of Soviet life the agency demanded. The outbreak of war caused a loosening of these requirements, as he embedded himself with the army, hitchhiked from one battlefield to another, and photographed the bloody realties of war. He traveled from the strategically-important arctic city of Murmansk, where he made his famous image of a panicked reindeer caught in an air raid, to the southern reach of Sevastopol, and then into Europe.

    The maquette’s Berlin photographs portray the Russian Army as liberators of the city. Khaldei was Jewish, and his photographs of the destruction of swastikas and other symbols of Nazi power are especially resonant. His culminating view of the triumphant raising of the Soviet flag atop the Reichstag is the European counterpart to Joe Rosenthal’s Flag Raising on Iwo Jima made in the Pacific theater earlier in 1945, and became equally famous.


Original Maquette for Ot Murmanska do Berlina. Sto Mgnovenii Voiny 1941-1945. Sobytiia i Liudi (From Murmansk to Berlin. One Hundred Moments of the War 1941-1945. Events and People.)

Unique book maquette with approximately 200 gelatin silver prints.
Varying dimensions from 6 1/2 x 9 5/8 in. (16.5 x 24.5 cm) to 10 x 13 5/8 in. (25.5 x 34.5 cm) or the reverse
Typed captions tipped-in, some manuscript image numbers and annotations in pencil on the mounts. Typescript introduction by Konstantin Simonov, signed, dated and manuscript note recording his impression of the book by Simonov in ink. Bound in original cardboard with three gelatin silver prints mounted on the front cover, taped spine.

$40,000 - 60,000 

Sold for $100,000

Contact Specialist
Rachel Peart
+1 212 940 1246

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Deputy Chairman, Americas

General Enquiries:
+1 212 940 1245

The Odyssey of Collecting: Photographs from Joy of Giving Something Foundation

New York 3 October 2017