Jan Saudek

Born May 13, 1935

Jan Saudek is an art photographer and painter. He and his twin brother Kaja Saudek are holocaust survivors.
Jan Saudek's art work represents a unique technique combining photography and painting. In his country of origin, Czechoslovakia, Jan was considered a disturbed artist and oppressed by authorities. His art gained more prominence during the 1990s, thanks to his collaboration with the publisher Taschen.
During the 2000s, Saudek lost all his photo negatives in matrimonial dispute and his pictures are now displayed on internet for free. Jan claims they were stolen from him.
Jan is the author of many “mise en scene” that were re-taken and copied by other artists. The cliché of a naked man holding a naked new born baby with tenderness became a picture that was reproduced so many times that the composition became as commonplace as posing for a graduation picture.
During his life in communist Czechoslovakia, Jan was labeled by the totalitarian regime as a pornographer.
He lived in poverty using the only room in his basement as his studio.
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