Gaál Zoltán (Budapest, 1953. április 18. – ) fotóriporter
Szakfényképész, ezzel párhuzamosan művészi igényű fényképeket készítve, fotóriporterként induló, majd az évek során művésszé váló fotográfus. Dokumentarista, emberközpontú képeket készít. A hagyományos fototechnikát részesíti előnyben, bizonyos eszköztelenség, fotó látásmód központúság jellemzi képeit.
Belonging to the middle generation of Hungarian photographers, Zoltán Gaál began his career as a studio portraitist and photojournalist. Gradually, he became an art photographer.
He came to know photography as a teenager, graduated in Sátoraljaújhely, then attended the Ministry of Education’s No. 5 Vocational School for Photographers between 1972 and 1974. In 1978, he graduated from the Department of Photojournalism at the MÚOSZ (Association of Hungarian Journalists) School for Journalism, where his teachers were Zoltán Szalay and Tamás Féner.
In the 80s, he worked as a photojournalist for Hungarian weeklies and magazines.
He took up Japanese in 1982, and from 1986 to 1988, he studied on a research scholarship in the Department of Photography at Osaka University of Arts, where he received instruction from excellent Japanese masters such as Takesji Iwamiya and Seiryū Inoue.
His close friendship with Mihály Gera, the editor of his books, has had a profound effect on his work. He held his first solo exhibition in Osaka in 1988.
Characteristic of his works are respect for the traditions of photography, simplicity and an emphatically photographic visual approach.
He is a subjective-documentary photographer, generally taking human-centred photos, even when no human appears them.
Instead of recording major, crucial events for posterity, he prefers the humdrum situations and everyday people around him. Interestingly, his style is a fusion of Hungarian and Japanese traditions in terms of photography and attitude. Gaál joined MÚOSZ in 1973 and the Federation of Hungarian Art Photographers in 1996. He has been a member of the Association of Hungarian Photojournalists since its inception in 1994.
At present, he is a freelance photographer, teaching practical photography to students of photojournalism at the MÚOSZ Bálint György School for Journalism, as well as exhibiting and publishing.
His works are preserved in the collections of the Hungarian Museum of Photography, the Archives of the Mai Manó House of Photography, and the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography.main publications