Sources: Hurriyet Daily News [link] and Ara's official website [link]
Master of photography, Ara Güler, has an archive of two million photos that he keeps in the third floor of an apartment inherited from his father. Born in Istanbul in 1928, Güler worked in a number of branches of filmmaking in various studios. In 1950 he began working as a journalist for daily Yeni Istanbul.
A graduate of the Istanbul University Faculty of Economics, Güler also worked as the near eastern photojournalist for Time-Life, Paris-Match and Der Stern magazines. In 1953, Güler met Henri Cartier Bresson and joined the Paris Magnum Agency.
Selected as “one of the world’s top seven photographers” in 1961 by the British-based Photography Annual Anthology, Güler was also accepted as the only Turkish member of the American Society of Media Photographers the same year.
Güler defined a photojournalist as someone who carried the mirror of his own period to the next generations: “Photojournalists and photographers are always confused. We are not photographers, but photojournalists. We record our period and leave it to the next generation. This is not ‘being a photographer’ but ‘being a photojournalist.’ I am not a photography artist. Being an artist is different. I am fed up with this word ‘art.’”
He still takes photographs and always carries a camera with him. “I don’t know how many cameras I have, but it’s above 50. I don’t use an expensive $8,000 camera, but a $600 camera. The result is very beautiful, I like it,” he said.
In Istanbul, he can still be found every day at Ara Kafe, just below his old house, near Independence Street (Istiklal Caddesi) [link]