The Art of Industry: Francois Kollar’s Stunning Photos Of Beauty In Work

Before he became a photographer at 24 François Kollar (born Senec, Slovakia, 1904 (formerly Szenc, Hungary); died Creteil, Paris, 1979) worked for the railways and at the Renault factories in Boulogne-Billancourt. His pictures of industry, both heavy and light (although the fashion industry’s gossamer touch is part of the illusion of glorious creation made from dream and desire rather than thick-wristed agriculture and workroom sweat) reveal his empathy with his subject.

 

Type dairy farm in Normandy 1950

Type dairy farm in Normandy
1950

Cima Factory, Cross about 1954

Cima Factory, Cross
about 1954

Cima Factory, Cross about 1954

Cima Factory, Cross
about 1954

Manufacturing vegetable mills, Factory Moulinex, Alençon 1950

Manufacturing vegetable mills, Factory Moulinex, Alençon
1950

 

“In Kollar’s images, the human measure is omnipresent; one almost never loses the sense of scale […]
with frequent contrasts between near and far, the intimate and the monumental” – Jean-François Chevrier, La France travaille: les vertus de l‘illustration

 

Manufacturing vegetable mills, Factory Moulinex, Alençon 1950

Manufacturing vegetable mills, Factory Moulinex, Alençon
1950

Stamping cutlery, Christofle, France 1957-1958

Stamping cutlery, Christofle, France
1957-1958

Rufisque, Bata shoes 1951

Rufisque, Bata shoes
1951

Staircase at Chanel 1937

Staircase at Chanel
1937

The Muth model, Balenciaga 1930

The Muth model, Balenciaga
1930

The sources of energy. Alsthom: Fitting alternators flying Kembs. Alsthom Company. Belfort (Territoire de Belfort) 1931-1934

The sources of energy. Alsthom: Fitting alternators flying Kembs. Alsthom Company. Belfort (Territoire de Belfort)
1931-1934

The sources of energy. Alsthom: Fitting alternators flying Kembs. Alsthom Company. Belfort (Territoire de Belfort) 1931-1934

The sources of energy. Alsthom: Fitting alternators flying Kembs. Alsthom Company. Belfort (Territoire de Belfort)
1931-1934

Minors. The sorter remains tidy. Lens, Pas-de-Calais. Mining company of Lens 1931-1934

Minors. The sorter remains tidy. Lens, Pas-de-Calais. Mining company of Lens
1931-1934

Minors. Cleaning lamps. Mining company of Lens. Lens (Pas-de-Calais) 1931-1934

Minors. Cleaning lamps. Mining company of Lens. Lens (Pas-de-Calais)
1931-1934

Renault automobiles. On the one hand the worker dropped the sand. Billancourt (Hauts-de-Seine)

Renault automobiles. On the one hand the worker dropped the sand. Billancourt (Hauts-de-Seine)

Construction of large ships, Riveting plates of a ship's deck, yard and workshops in Saint-Nazaire Penhoët 1931-1932

Construction of large ships, Riveting plates of a ship’s deck, yard and workshops in Saint-Nazaire Penhoët
1931-1932

Mouth of St. Catherine tunnel, Sotteville-lés-Rouen Sotteville-lés-Rouen, 1931- 1932

Mouth of St. Catherine tunnel, Sotteville-lés-Rouen
Sotteville-lés-Rouen, 1931- 1932

Advertising typewriter Hermes 1930

Advertising typewriter Hermes
1930

Study advertising for Magic Phono, Marie Bell portrait photomontage 1930

Study advertising for Magic Phono, Marie Bell portrait photomontage
1930

Garlic flower 1930

Garlic flower
1930

Eiffel Tower 1931

Eiffel Tower
1931

Portrait of François Kollar

Portrait of François Kollar

See more of Kollar’s work at the Jeu de Paume galleries.