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Josef Koudelka is a contemporary photographer. Josef Koudelka was born in Boskovice, Czechoslovakia in the year 1935. The artist’s focus is on social rituals, death, people’s personalities and the landscape.

Koudelka attended Czech Technical University where he earned a degree engineering.

Below a short interview featuring the artist:

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Koudelka worked for a time as a space engineer from 1961 to 1967. At this point in his life Koudelka wanted to make the leap to becoming a full time photographer.

During the political strife that encompassed his country the artist was forced to flee. His images of these events led him to gain employment with the prestigious Magnum Photos. He would eventually end up in England where he would apply for political asylum.

Koudelka won an award from the United States National Endowment for the Arts.

In 1987 Koudelka became a French citizen.

The artist now splits his time between Prague, Czechoslovakia and France.

Koudelka has a great eye for capturing the energy of his subjects. They seem very natural in their appearance, not posed or forced into position. His work with people reminds of the master photographer Diane Arbus.