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PIX Publishing Inc.

  • Name:
    PIX Publishing Inc.
  • Kind of Organisation:
    Photo Agency
  • Introduction:

    PIX Publishing Inc. was a photo agency founded in New York in 1935 by photo agent Leon Daniel and Celia Kutschuk, together with German émigré photographers Alfred Eisenstaedt and George Karger.

    Word Count: 30

  • Content:

    Leon Daniel was born in Romania and grew up in Germany, where he worked as picture manager at the Berlin office of Associated Press, the press photo agency. Celia Kutschuk (a Ukrainian émigré and aunt of the photographer Jerry Cooke) and Alfred Eisenstaedt also worked at Associated Press and the three knew each other before their emigration to New York. The German émigré Franz Furst, who arrived around 1936 to New York, was probably the picture agent of PIX (and later vice president).

    Together with the Black Star, Rapho Guillemette, Modernage, Monkmeyer, European Picture Service and Three Lions photo agencies, PIX provided an important network hub for emigrant photographers and photojournalist who had fled Europe for New York. Located at 250 Park Avenue, PIX was close to the Black Star Agency and to the headquarters of such magazines as Life and U.S. Camera, and also close to Grand Central Terminal. This was an advantageous location as trains were an important and reliable means of transportation for pictures at the time. In addition to Eisenstaedt and Karger, PIX Publishing also represented the work of émigrés Josef Breitenbach, Fred Stein, Lilo Hess, Ernest Rathenau, Wolfgang (Wolf) Suschitzky, Otto F. Hess, Robert Capa, John Gutmann, as well as British-born Cecil Beaton and the Americans Nina Leen, Marion Post-Wolcott and Eileen Darby, and many more. Like Black Star, PIX charged fifty percent commission on the pictures they sold, as can be gleaned from the correspondence between Leon Daniel and Fred Stein. (As a matter of interest, in the late 1930s and early 1940s, an apartment rental in Manhattan cost between $50 and $150, depending on location, with $20 corresponding to about $300 in today's money.) The agency also provided work as darkroom technical assistants for newly-arrived émigré photographers still establishing their careers, as in the case of Werner Wolff.

    In the 1970s the PIX archive was integrated with the Klinsky Press Agency collection and is now part of the huge collection of photojournalistic and press images located at the Gallery of Ontario.

    Word Count: 334

  • Known addresses in Metromod cities:

    250 Park Avenue, Midtown Manhattan, New York City.

  • Signature Image:
    Letterhead of PIX Inc. – Correspondence Daniel Leon with Fred Stein, 1943, cropped detail (© Fred Stein Archive).
  • Media:
    Letterhead of PIX Inc. – Correspondence Daniel Leon with Fred Stein, 1943 (© Fred Stein Archive).
    Mention of PIX Publishing in a photographic guide (Ahlers 1953, p. 46).
  • Bibliography (selected):

    Ahlers, Arvel W. Where & how to sell your pictures. Photography Publishing Corp., 1953.

    Bouqueret, Christian. Des années folles. Aux années noires. La nouvelle vision photographique en France 1920–1940. Marval, 1997.

    Blaschke, Estelle. Photography and the Commodification of Images: from the Bettmann Archive to Corbis (ca. 1924–2010) (doctoral thesis). École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, 2011. issuu. Accessed 2 March 2021.

    Gervais, Thierry. The Making of Visual News. A History of Photography in the Press. Translated by John Tittenson, Bloomsbury, 2017.

    Kornfeld, Phoebe. Passionate Publishers. The Founders of the Black Star Photo Agency. University of Missouri Press, 2021.

    Morris, John Godfrey. Get the Picture. A Personal History of Photojournalism. University of Chicago Press, 2002.

    New York Photography 1890–1950. Von Stieglitz bis Man Ray, edited by Ortrud Westheider and Michael Philipp, exh. cat Bucerius Kunst Forum, Hamburg, 2012.

    Smith, C. Zoe. “Emigré photography in America: contributions of German photojournalism from Black Star Picture Agency to Life magazine, 1933–1938.” (unpublished dissertation, School of Journalism in the Graduate College of the University of Iowa, Iowa City, December 1983).

    Smith, C. Zoe. “Black Star Picture Agency: Life’s European Connection.” Journalism History, vol. 13, no. 1, 1986, pp. 19–25.

    Smith, C. Zoe. “Die Bildagentur ‘Black Star’. Inspiration für eine neue Magazinfotografie in den USA.” Kommunikation visuell. Das Bild als Forschungsgegenstand – Grundlagen und Perspektiven, edited by Thomas Knieper and Marion G. Müller, Herbert von Halem, 2001, pp. 240–249.

    Solomon, Leo M. There’s Money in Pictures. Newsweek, 1951.

    Word Count: 227

  • Acknowledgements:

    My deepest thanks go to Peter Stein for providing me with photographs and archival material of the Estate of Fred Stein, who was commissioned for Pix Publishing.

    Word Count: 27

  • Author:
    Helene Roth
  • Date of Founding:
    01-11-1935
  • Date of Disbandment:
    1969
  • Participants (selection):

    Cecil Beaton, Josef Breitenbach, Robert Capa, Leon Daniel, Eileen Darby, Alfred Eisenstaedt, John Gutmann, Otto F. Hess, Nina Leen, Marion Post-Wolcott, Fred Stein and Werner Wolff and many more.

  • Metropolis:
    New York
  • Entry in process:
    no
  • Helene Roth. "PIX Publishing Inc.." METROMOD Archive, 2021, https://archive.metromod.net/viewer.p/69/2948/object/5145-9603669, last modified: 03-03-2022.
  • Werner Wolff
    Photographer

    Werner Wolff was forced to leave Germany in 1936 due to his Jewish background and emigrated via Hamburg to New York, where he could follow his career as photographer and photojournalist.

    Word Count: 30

    Lotte Jacobi, Werner Wolff, 1943, New York (© 2021. University of New Hampshire).
    “Speaking of Pictures. Mrs. Roosevelt Takes Voice Lessons.” Life, 13 March 1939, pp. 6–9 (Photo: Helene Roth).Agreement between Black Star and Werner Wolff, 1947 (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).Camera Features stamp (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).Contact sheets for reportage on Empire State Building by Werner Wolff, 1946 (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).Rear side of contact sheets for reportage on Empire State Building by Werner Wolff, 1946 (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).Text for reportage on Empire State Building, written by Werner Wolff, 1946 (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).List of images and description for reportage on Empire State Building, written by Werner Wolff, 1946 (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).“Daredevil at Work” reportage by Werner Wolff in Popular Photography, September 1946, p. 39 (Photo: Helene Roth).Werner Wolff, K.S. Safranski’s Class in Pictorial Journalism, 1950 (New School for Research Archive, Photograph Collection © Steven Wolff).
    New York
    Fred Stein
    PhotographerLawyer

    Always accompanied by his camera, the German émigré photographer Fred Stein discovered New York City during the 1940s and 1950s. His pictures provide an human and multifaceted view of the metropolis.

    Word Count: 31

    Fred Stein, Self-portrait, 1941 (© Fred Stein Archive).
    Fred Stein, El at Water Street, 1946 (© Fred Stein Archive).Portrait Alvin Saunders Johnson by Fred Stein, New School for Research Archive, Photograph Collection (© Fred Stein Archive). Children Photographs exhibition by Fred Stein, April 1947 (© Fred Stein Archive).Affidavit in Lieu of Passport (© Fred Stein Archive).Fred Stein, Anette Kolb, New York, 1945 (© Fred Stein Archive).Fritz Neugass. “The saga of the S.S. Winnipeg.” Modern Photography, July 1951, pp. 72–73 (Photo: Helene Roth).Black Star contract by Fred Stein, April 1, 1944 (© Fred Stein Archive).New York 1949 calendar by Fred Stein, Lumen Publisher (© Fred Stein Archive).Mixed articles and reviews on 5th Avenue photobook form Fred Stein's scrapbook (© Fred Stein Archive).Portrait of Fritz H. Landshoff (of Querido Publishing House) by Fred Stein, 1944 (© Fred Stein Archive).Portrait of Kurt Wolff (of publishing house Pantheon Books) by Fred Stein, 1959 (© Fred Stein Archive).Announcement by Pantheon Books from Fred Stein’s scrapbook (© Fred Stein Archive).Rapho Guillumette agency letter to Fred Stein, 1944 (© Fred Stein Archive).Cover of 5th Avenue photobook (Pantheon Books, 1947) by Fred Stein (© Fred Stein Archive).
    New York
    Lotte Jacobi
    Photographer

    In October 1935 the German émigré photographer Lotte Jacobi, together with her sister Ruth Jacobi, opened a photo studio on 57th Street. The two sisters had to leave their parents' photo studio in Berlin in the 1930s and emigrated to New York.

    Word Count: 41

    Lotte Jacobi, Self-portrait, New York, 1937 (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).
    Lotte Jacobi, Central Park, New York, 1936 (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Lotte Jacobi, New York Stock Exchange, New York, 1938 (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Lotte Jacobi, Ernst Fuhrmann, New York, 1942 (© 2021. University of New Hampshire).Lotte Jacobi, Hanya Holm dancing with troup, 1937 (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Flyer for Lotte Jacobi’s exhibition at the Norlyst Gallery, 1948 (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Willi Wolfradt. "Lichtbild-Schöpfungen." Aufbau, 15 October 1948, p. 19.Lotte Jacobi, Werner Wolff, 1943, New York (© 2021. University of New Hampshire).Lotte Jacobi, Ruth Bernhard, 1945, New York (© 2021. University of New Hampshire).
    New York
    Lilo Hess
    Photographer

    The German émigré Lilo Hess was an animal photographer working for the Museum for Natural History and the Bronx Zoo, as well being a freelance photographer and publisher of children's books.

    Word Count: 31

    Portrait of Lilo Hess (Commire 1973, p. 112).
    Portrait of Lilo Hess – Life, 6 September 1943, p. 21 (Photo: Helene Roth).Photography by Lilo Hess – Fotografische Rundschau, vol. 72, 1935, p. 323 (Photo: Helene Roth).Book cover Odd Pets (Crowell, 1951).Front of the book Odd Pets (Crowell, 1951).Inside of the book Odd Pets (Crowell, 1951).Photo of drinking gibbons at the Bronx Zoo, photographed by Lilo Hess (Life, 13 December 1948, p. 126).
    New York
    Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs
    Photobook

    Manhattan Magic is a photobook which was published in 1937 by the German émigré photographer Mario Bucovich in New York City.

    Word Count: 20

    Cover of Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing, 1937.
    First page of Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 8–9.“Looking from the 17th floor of the Irving Tower at No. 1 Wall Street. In the center is the Singer Building, forty-five stories high, and in 1910 the highest tower in Manhattan.” Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 30–31.Pennsylvania and Central Station in Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 46–47.The Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 28–29.City Hall columns and Woolworth Building in Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 32–33.Skyscrapers shadows with a view on 60 Wall street tower and Irving Trust Company in Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 18–19.Last page of Manhattan Magic. A collection of eighty-five photographs by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1937, pp. 46–47.Cover of Washington D.C. by Mario Bucovich, M.B. Publishing Company, 1936.
    New York
    Black Star Agency
    Photo Agency

    The German émigrés Kurt S(z)afranski, Ern(e)st Mayer and Kurt Kornfeld founded Black Star in 1936. The photo agency established was a well-run networking institution in New York.

    Word Count: 31

    Letterhead of Black Star (Black Star Archive. Ryerson Image Center, Photo: Helene Roth).
    Logo and Stamp of Black Star Photo Agency (Photo: Helene Roth, 2019).Description of Black Star in a photographic guide (Ahlers, Arvel W.. Where & how to sell your pictures. Photography Publishing Corp., 1953, p. 45).Werner Wolff, K.S. Safranski’s Class in Pictorial Journalism, 1950 (New School for Research Archive, Photograph Collection © Steven Wolff).Facade and entrance of the Graybar Building on Lexington Avenue (Photo: Helene Roth, 2018).Cover of Selling Your Pictures by Kurt Safranski (Ziff Davis Publishing Company, 1940).Black Star contract by Fred Stein, April 1, 1944 (© Fred Stein Archive).Announcement of "Pictorial Journalism. Photographs as a Language and their special Problems" course by Kurt Safranski at the New School for Social Research, Spring 1949 (© The New School Archives and Special Collection, The New School, New York).Letterhead with the logo and address of Black Star (© Fred Stein Archive).
    New York
    Leco Photo Service
    Photo Lab

    Leco Photo Service was a photofinishing lab, highly-frequented and a contact hub for émigré photographers and photo agencies during the 1930s and 1940s, as well as a provider of employment for women in the photo industry.

    Word Count: 36

    Advertisment Leco Photo Service (Photo: Helene Roth).
    Leco Photo Service mentioned in Etna Kelley. “Woman in Photography.”, Popular Photography, June 1945, pp. 23 (Photo: Helene Roth).Article on Leco Photo Service by Etna Kelley. “Photofinishing Plus.” Popular Photography, February 1947, pp. 84–85 (Photo: Helene Roth).
    New York
    Schocken Books
    Publishing House

    Schocken Books was a publishing house established in 1945 in New York by the Russian émigré Salman Schocken (1898–1959). It specialised in books on Judaica and Hebrew topics.

    Word Count: 26

    Schocken Books logo (Private Archive Helene Roth).
    Letterhead of Schocken Books Inc., May 1955, Lotte Jacobi Archive, Correspondence (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Letterhead of Schocken Books Inc., July 1955, Lotte Jacobi Archive, Correspondence (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).Letterhead of Schocken Books Inc., 1973, Lotte Jacobi Archive, Correspondence (© 2020. University of New Hampshire).First page of Polish Jews. A Pictorial Record by Roman Vishniac (Schocken Books, 1947).Robert Cromie. “Exceptional Photos Made by Roman Vishniac.” Chicago Tribune, 7 September 1947, p. 221.
    New York
    Camera Features
    Photo Agency

    Camera Features was a photo agency founded by the photographer Werner Wolff and other colleagues of the photo agency PIX.

    Word Count: 20

    Camera Features stamp (The Family of Werner Wolff © Ryerson Image Center).
    New York
    Rapho Guillumette
    Photo Agency

    Founded in 1940 by the emigrant Charles Rado (1899–1970), Rapho Guillumette was a picture agency.

    Word Count: 13

    Rapho Guillumette agency letter to Fred Stein, 1944 (© Fred Stein Archive).
    New York
    Three Lions Inc.
    Photo Agency

    Little is known about this photo agency, which was founded by two German émigré brothers, Max Georg and Walter Löwenherz in 1937 in New York

    Word Count: 25

    Logo of Three Lions Inc. (© Center for Creative Photography, Marion Palfi Archive, AG 46:1A).
    Mention of Three Lions in a photographic guide (Ahlers, Arvel W.. Where & how to sell your pictures. Photography Publishing Corp., 1953, p. 46).Job advertisement of Three Lions published in Aufbau magazine, 1. September 1939, no. 16, p. 26 (Photo: Helene Roth).Advertisement of Three Lions (Billboard, 11 February 1967, p. 37).
    New York
    Photo-Representatives
    Photo Agency

    Photo-Representatives was a photo agency founded by the photographers Erika Stone and Anita Beer in 1953.

    Word Count: 15

    Stamp of the photo agency Photo Representatives (© Erika Stone, Courtesy of Katarina Doerner Photographs, Brooklyn, NY).
    New York
    European Picture Service
    Photo Agency

    The European Picture Service was a photo agency located in Midtown Manhattan founded, probably in 1930, by the émigré photographer Max Peter Haas (1901–1985).

    Word Count: 22

    Letterhead of European Picture Service, November 1938 (© Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG 90:4).
    Norman C. Lipton. “20 exciting years with a miniature.” Popular Photography, September 1949, pp. 46–47 (Photo: Helene Roth).Images by Max Peter Haas for European Picture Service on gunfight near 5th Avenue (Daily News, 15 January 1914, p. 123).Second article of Max Peter Haas for European Picture Service on gunfight near 5th Avenue (Daily News, 15 January 1914, p. 562).
    New York
    Pavelle Laboratories Inc.
    Photo LabPhoto Supplier

    Pavelle Laboratories was found in 1936 by Leo and Carmen Pavelle and operated on East 42nd Street. It was specialised in the development of miniature camera film and one of the first labs working with colour film.

    Word Count: 36

    Logo of Pavelle Laboratories in Popular Photography, December 1943, p. 88.
    Article on Pavelle Laboratories (White 1951, 131).Article on Pavelle Laboratories in White 1951, 132–133).Advertisement for Pavelle Laboratories in Popular Photography, December 1943, p. 88.
    New York
    Modernage Photographic Services Inc
    Photo Lab

    Modernage Photographic Services was founded in 1944 by the German émigrés Ralph and Leuba Baum and specialised in photofinishing services. In 1954 a second branch, Modernage Custom Darkrooms, was opened.

    Word Count: 29

    Advertisement Modernage Photographic Services in The Norwalk Hour, 3 June 1969, p. 25.
    New York
    Monkmeyer Photo Service
    Photo Agency

    The Monkmeyer Photo Service photo agency was founded around 1935/36 by the German émigrés Hilde and Paul August Monkmeyer in New York City.

    Word Count: 23

    Logo of Monkmeyer Photo Services (Photo: Helene Roth)
    New York
    Josef Breitenbach
    Photographer

    On arriving in New York in 1941, the German photographer Josef Breitenbach tried to restart as a portrait, street and experimental photographer, as well as a teacher of photo-history and techniques.

    Word Count: 30

    Fred Stein, Joseph Breitenbach, n.d. (© Deutsche Nationalbibliothek. Deutsches Exilarchiv 1933-1945, Frankfurt am Main).
    Fred Stein, Backside portrait Joseph Breitenbach, n.d. (© Deutsche Nationalbibliothek. Deutsches Exilarchiv 1933-1945, Frankfurt am Main).Attestation of Identity of Josef Breitenbach, Agen, September 1940 (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:5).Affidavit for Josef Breitenbach, April 1941 (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:12).Address book Josef Breitenbach, New York (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:6).Page with collected addresses of photographers in New York by Josef Breitenbach (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:6).Page with collected addresses of colleagues at the New School for Social Research in New York by Josef Breitenbach (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:6).Application for use of photographic equipment by Josef Breitenbach, 1942 (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:12).Business card Josef Breitenbach (© The Josef and Yaye Breitenbach Charitable Foundation, courtesy of The Center for Creative Photography, Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:6).Letter from Fortune Magazine, 1942 (© Josef Breitenbach Archive, AG90:4, Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona).
    New York
    Wolf Suschitzky
    PhotographerCinematographer

    The Viennese Wolf Suschitzky made a career as a photographer and cinematographer after emigrating to London in 1935.

    Word Count: 17

    Animal and Zoo Magazine, vol. 3, no. 6, 1938, cover photograph by Wolf Suschitzky (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).
    Animal and Zoo Magazine, vol. 3, no. 6, 1938, p. 29 with photographs by Wolf Suschitzky (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Animal and Zoo Magazine, vol. 3, no. 6, 1938, p. 30 with photographs by Wolf Suschitzky (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Animal and Zoo Magazine, vol. 3, no. 2, 1938, pp. 14–15 with photographs by Wolf Suschitzky (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Wolf Suschitzky (photographs) and Julian Huxley (text). Kingdom of the Beasts. Thames and Hudson, 1956, pp. 84–85 (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Wolf Suschitzky. Photographing Animals. The Studio, 1941, cover (© Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Wolf Suschitzky. Photographing Animals. The Studio, 1941, p. 21 (© Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Wolf Suschitzky. Photographing Children. The Studio, 1940, cover (© Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Wolf Suschitzky. Photographing Children. The Studio, 1940, p. 53 (© Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).Lilliput, vol. 6, 1940, p. 311: “London Snowstorm”, photo: Wolf Suschitzky (© The Estate of Wolfgang Suschitzky).
    London