Portrait Of Gerda Taro

Gerda Taro: A Female War Photographer in the Spotlight

A Google Doodle helps a German photojournalist emerge from the shadow of her famous partner, Robert Capa.

Eighty-one years after Gerda Taro was killed while covering the Spanish Civil War, the pioneering photojournalist is finally getting the recognition she deserves, in the most contemporary way possible: On her birthday, August 1, she is the subject of a Google Doodle. While she has long been recognized as one of the first female photographers to cover conflicts from the front lines, Taro’s images from the Spanish Civil War remained relatively unknown until they were rediscovered in 2007. Here, a look back at the forgotten photographer who paved the way for countless other women in her field.

RAISED FOR CONFLICT Fred Stein Archive/Getty Images RAISED FOR CONFLICT Born in Germany in 1910 to a middle-class Jewish family, Taro left for Paris in the 1930s after she was arrested for distributing anti-Nazi propaganda. It was in Paris where she met Hungarian photographer Endre Friedmann (later known to the world as "Robert Capa") who would become her professional partner and her lover. BECOMING ROBERT CAPA Fred Stein Archive/Getty Images BECOMING ROBERT CAPA After discovering they could make more money by assuming an American-sounding name, the two photographers adopted the alias "Robert Capa," and over the next three years covered the Spanish Civil War for Paris newspapers under that name. Pictured: Taro and Capa photographed in 1936.

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DEATH ON THE BATTLEFIELD Fred Stein Archive/Getty Images DEATH ON THE BATTLEFIELD In 1937, while covering the Battle of Brunete outside of Madrid, Taro was killed when a tank ran into a car carrying wounded soldiers. Taro had jumped onto the car's running board moments before, to join the Republican retreat. She was 26 years old. CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE Fred Stein Archive/Getty Images CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE In the early 2000s, thousands of lost rolls of film were discovered by the nephew of a Mexican ambassador who was in possession of the negatives (by ways that remain somewhat of a mystery) and delivered them to the International Center of Photography in New York City, where they were finally made available for viewing. It was only then that film scholars began to realize that, for decades, much of Taro's work had wrongly been attributed to Capa. Pictured: Taro in Paris, 1936. GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN GERARD JULIEN/AFP/Getty Images GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN Currently on display at Sweden's Malmö Museer through October 14, "The Mexican Suitcase" exhibition showcasing Taro's work (along with photographs from Capa and fellow photojournalist David Seymour, best-known by his nickname "Chim") now tours the world, allowing everyone to experience Taro's groundbreaking wartime photographs. Pictured: A view of "The Mexican Suitcase" exhibition in Arles, France, July 2011. Visitors take in photographs on display at "The Mexican Suitcase" exhibition at the National Art Museum of Catalunya in Barcelona, October 2011. Robert Marquardt/Getty Images Visitors take in photographs on display at "The Mexican Suitcase" exhibition at the National Art Museum of Catalunya in Barcelona, October 2011.

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