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Limb Eung-sik

Born 1912, Japan. Died 2001, South Korea.

Limb Eung-sik is now regarded as one of the most important figures in the history of photography in South Korea. Having started as an amateur photographer, he first focused on pictorialism as part of the Pusan Photography Association and Kangreung Photography Association during the Japanese colonial period (1910-1945). Following the Korean War (1950-1953) as a war photographer, Limb Eung-sik became interested in the realistic photographic recording of facts, and later advocated a genre of photography called « life-centered photography » - a form of realism based on humanism, expressing the realities of society and the lives of people - which became very popular after the war. As an advocate of photography, Limb Eung-sik brought New York MoMA’s legendary exhibition The Family of Man to Seoul’s National Museum of Contemporary Art (NMOCA) in 1957, which is credited to have been the first major photography exhibition in Korea. Limb was the first-ever Korean photographer to hold a show at a national museum, in 1982 at the NMOCA.