LIFE Photographer

Born in Levin 1916, educated Auckland Grammar, George Silk became a combat photographer for Australian Ministry of Information, covering the battles at close hand in the Middle East, North Africa, Greece and New Guinea. He joined LIFE magazine as a war correspondent in 1944. Captured, escaped, wounded during the war, he took the first pictures of Nagasaki after the atomic bomb had been dropped. Silk stayed with LIFE for 34 years, specializing in adventure, exploration and sports photography, including the Olympics and America’s Cup. He was named US Magazine Photographer of the Year four times. He pioneered the use of a special camera for depicting athletes in motion. Using an adapted racetrack photo-finish camera to take sequential stills of the athletes, the “strip” camera exposed the film as it rolled past a hole. He had lived in Westport, Connecticut. The NGA in Canberra had a retrospective exhibition of his work in 2000.

George Silk: 17 November 1916 – 23 October 2004


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