Heinrich von der Becke *20.03.1913 — †25.06.1997
Photo: Gerhard Großkopf | Heinrich von der Becke with the Rolleiflex 2.8 F | Heinrich von der Becke Picture Archive in the Berlin Sports Museum (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)
Heinrich von der Becke was an important press photographer and one of the most renowned sports photographers at many national and international sporting events from the mid-1930s to the early 1990s. His photos appeared worldwide, in German and international illustrated magazines, as well as regularly in the relevant daily newspapers, but also in several illustrated books and Olympic books. Also on various exhibitions at home and abroad one could see the among other things also award-winning unique time documents.
He began as a 12-year-old with an Agfa Billy bellows camera, followed by plate cameras, 35mm cameras to the first automatic cameras, with which he most creatively preserved the charm of the moment often in exactly the right second. Always focusing on people, he liked to take pictures from unusual perspectives at contemporary and popular locations. The 1936 Olympics (15 in all) marked the beginning of his career, followed by the tragic war years as a reporter. He documented the reconstruction, the popular uprising in 1953, the building of the Berlin Wall and countless historical and social events and became one of Berlin’s most successful city reporters. Nevertheless, he devoted most of his work to the exciting moments in sports.
He was a thoughtful and modest man. On this website you can learn more about the artist and sports lover.
This website was created with extensive research and editing of the compiled photos, press reviews, articles as well as audio and video documents. In the end, we owe it to the goodwill of all those involved that it was possible to commemorate Heinrich von der Becke here.
First and foremost, we would like to thank the Berlin Sports Museum, which manages the entire image archive and provided the images published here. But we would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the media listed below for their uncomplicated support.
Last but not least, thanks go to the authors of the articles, including Thomas Willaschek (Berlin Sports Museum) and especially Manfred Nippe, who also supported the research.