Death in the Making - Robert Capa, Gerda Taro 1938 - Covici Friede, New York - First Edition 'If the photo isn't good enough, it's because you're not close enough.' – Robert Capa

A stunning copy of Robert Capa’s first published monograph – a landmark of 20
th century war photography – in the rare dust jacket depicting a Loyalist soldier falling to his death, gun in hand, after being shot – a now iconic image of the Spanish Civil War Featuring 145 photographs by Robert Capa and Gerda Taro, captions by Robert Capa, translated and with a preface by Jay Allen, and arranged by André Kertesz. Housed in a custom clamshell case of fine black morocco leather over matching cloth, velvet lined, and lettered in gilt to the spine.

From 1936 onwards, Capa's coverage of the Spanish Civil War appeared regularly. His picture of a Loyalist soldier who had just been fatally wounded earned him his international reputation and became a powerful symbol of war. After his companion, Gerda Taro, was killed in Spain, Capa travelled to China in 1938 and emigrated to New York a year later. As a correspondent in Europe, he photographed the Second World War, covering the landing of American troops on Omaha beach on D-Day, the liberation of Paris and the Battle of the Bulge
  On 3 December 1938 Picture Post introduced 'The Greatest War Photographer in the World: Robert Capa' with a spread of 26 photographs taken during the Spanish Civil War.

But the '
greatest war photographer' hated war. Born Andre Friedmann to Jewish parents in Budapest in 1913, he studied political science at the Deutsche Hochschule für Politik in Berlin. Driven out of the country by the threat of a Nazi regime, he settled in Paris in 1933. He was represented by Alliance Photo and met the journalist and photographer Gerda Taro. Together, they invented the 'famous' American photographer Robert Capa and began to sell his prints under that name. He met Pablo Picasso and Ernest Hemingway, and formed friendships with fellow photographers David 'Chim' Seymour and Henri Cartier-Bresson.

In 1947 Capa founded
Magnum Photos with Henri Cartier-Bresson, David Seymour, George Rodger and William Vandivert. On 25 May 1954 he was photographing for Life in Thai-Binh, Indochina, when he stepped on a landmine and was killed. The French army awarded him the Croix de Guerre with Palm posthumously. The Robert Capa Gold Medal Award was established in 1955 to reward exceptional professional merit.

Allegations that Capa’s famous photograph, titled ‘
Loyalist Militiaman at the Moment of Death, Cerro Muriano, September 5, 1936’ was a fake first emerged in 1975, and the controversy raged on for decades — with a superabundance of hot tempers and a dearth of objective analysis or research — until a fantastic breakthrough occurred in August 1996, when Rita Grosvenor, a British journalist based in Spain, wrote an article about a Spaniard, named Mario Brotóns Jordá, who had identified the Falling Soldier as Federico Borrell García and had confirmed in the Spanish government’s archives that Borrell had been killed in battle at Cerro Muriano on September 5, 1936.

References: Whelan, ‘Robert Capa: In Love and War’
Aperture 2002. Magnum Photos, web. Kennedy, ‘The Capa Cache’ The New York Times 2008. Parr Badger, The Photobook I 139.
pp. [96]
  Condition: Fine, in near fine unclipped dust jacket, minor chip to upper rear panel, 2 cm closed tear to upper front panel, light rubbing at front spine folds modicum of wear to corners.   Ref: 107114   Price: HK$ 60,000