The artistic photographer and poet, Ilse Bing, was born on March 23, 1899, in Frankfurt, Germany. She grew up in a family where arts and sciences were venerated. Known in Europe and New York in the 1930's and 40's as "The Queen of the Leica," her poetry and images stand the test of time. Ilse Bing died on March 10, 1998, just short of her 99th birthday, and celebrations in honor of her work took place throughout the year.
is just another day
in striving to climb
the infinite ladder
of our dreams
Autoportrait dans Miroirs 1931
Some of the poems that are included in this tribute to Ilse were from a collection of poems entitled:
SNAPSHOTS WITHOUT A CAMERA
which was published to celebrate the ninetieth birthday of the poet by her friends and admirers.
Danseuse de cancan au Moulin Rouge 1931
has to be pictured
has to be said
has to be dreamed
has to be held tight
but do not touch it with your finger
July 16, 1982
ILSE BING wrote in the introduction of her book:
ILSE BING 1929/1955
WOMEN from the cradle to old age
When I was a little girl, children were looked upon as, "not yet" - something not yet perfect. I resented this approach toward me. But I was no fighter, and I retreated into my own world. This world was so colorful and so rich that I wanted never to become a grown-up.
Yet, I had to grow up. This childhood experience, however, stayed with me. It helped me see and understand life in a much greater variety and depth. It made me respect all children as persons complete in themselves, as persons who had to find their own way, with ideas and inner struggles as valid as those of grown-ups.
On the other hand, I found out that grown persons are no more secure, no more free than children. Fundamentally, even if in a different way, they confront the same problems, they are filled with the same hopes, the same anguishes and joys, ...their deepest possible insights go in the same direction...
Danseuses a l'ecole de laban' Frankfurt 1929
because it hurts
because i am tired
because i doubt
because i fear
because i believe
july 10, 1986
Kate Kemker from Ringwood, New Jersey, wrote about her hero, Ilse Bing:
"...what a strong, creative force. Her passing will more than likely mark her spirit's last incarnation in this realm. She has gone on to loftier dimensions to accomplish even greater feats of love and creativity. She will be missed, but not forgotten.