Dirk de Herder (1914 – 2003) called himself a ‘wizzard of light’. His classic black & white photographs have been popular ever since 1946, when his first book about Amsterdam was published (now a classic at photobook auctions by itself). His images of the old centre of Amsterdam and later, in the same style, Stockholm and Paris were influenced by Brassaï, with whom he corresponded, exchanged books and prints. As a photographer he was also acquinted with COBRA, whose members he regulary photographed (and published in another book). For VARA television, a Dutch broadcasting company, he photographed many celebrities for the television programguides. But his hart was always with his free work. He made many more books, ‘Never travel without a Suitcase full of Dreams’ (80 photographs, for his 80th birthday) and ‘Flashback’ (about his life), were among the last.
The negatives and archive of Dirk de Herder are in the Nederlands Fotomuseum in Rotterdam. The Fotomuseum Den Haag also has a large collection. We have a direct access to his estate, so all the prints that are still available were printed, signed and stamped by De Herder himself, mostly done in the 1970’s.