1917, printed 1980
Gelatin silver print
Image: 17.9 x 24.6 cm (7 1/16 x 9 11/16 in.); Paper: 20.3 x 25.2 cm (8 x 9 15/16 in.)
Gift of Alan and Monah L. Gettner 2021.118
Esztergom, on the banks of the Danube, is one of Hungary’s oldest towns and was once the country’s capital.
The boaters in André Kertész’s photograph seem to exist in a world of calm, peace, and quiet reflection, enjoying a moment of pleasure and escape as World War I raged across Europe. Kertész, who served in the Austro-Hungarian army throughout the war, was wounded in 1915 and sent to Esztergom to recuperate. He photographed throughout the war, but chose to depict soldiers’ leisurely moments instead of combat.
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