Legendary Vancouver photographer Fred Herzog dies at 88

Photographer known for his vivid images of Vancouver streets and people

Iconic Vancouver photographer Fred Herzog passed away on Monday, Sept. 9 at age 88.

Herzog was known for his vibrant, compelling shots of Vancouver’s streets and people.

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The Equinox Gallery confirmed his passing on an Instagram post.



The gallery has represented Herzog for the past 15 years.

Herzog’s legacy spans than 50 years, but some of his most famous images were taken during the 1950s and 1960s.

Man with Bandage. Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery
Man with Bandage. Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery

Vancouver Is Awesome spoke to the owner of the Equinox Gallery, Andy Sylvester, who described his friendship with Herzog, as well as what made Herzog unique among his peers.

“Fred used colour during a time when most serious photographers would only shoot black-and-white,” says Sylvester.

During the 1950s, when Herzog would shoot in colour, he wouldn’t be able to develop the photographs into print. In fact, it wasn’t until 2006 that the photographer was able to transcribe his colourful images from the 1950s and 1960s.

Hastings at Columbia (2). Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery
Hastings at Columbia (2). Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery

Sylvester says that Herzog was most notably influenced by Swiss photographer Robert Franks and Walker Evans -- Evans’ photographs captured the Great Depression in the United States, while Franks’ legendary 1950s photographs were compiled in the book The Americans.

Franks also passed away the same day as Herzog on Monday, Sept. 9.

“I travelled around to many different cities with Fred,” said Sylvester. “He visited over 40 countries.”

Herzog is survived by his daughter Ariana and his son Tyson; his wife Christel passed away in 2013.

Bogner's Grocery. Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery
Bogner's Grocery. Photo Fred Herzog/Equinox Gallery

See more of Herzog’s work with the Equinox Gallery here.

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