Tošo Dabac

Tošo Dabac (Nova Rača, 1907 – Zagreb, 1970) is one of the founders and main representatives of the Zagreb School of Photography. He had his first contact with photography in 1924 with his schoolmate Ivica Sudnik from Samobor. His first preserved photograph is a panorama of Samobor, signed and dated March 7, 1925. Dabac exhibited his photographs for the first time at an amateur exhibition in Ivanec in 1932. He is a representative of social photography. He records street life, beggars, common people, fairgrounds, processions and traveling circus performers (cycles Misery and Street Life, 1932-1935). This is followed by cycles of portraits, folklore, animals, architecture, landscapes and cultural monuments, on which he worked until the end of his life. Since the thirties of the 20th century, he participated in a series of exhibitions in the country and abroad (Prague, Philadelphia, Lucerne, Antwerp, Vienna, Ljubljana, Frankfurt, Munich, New York) in the company of the then most famous world photographers. He had the great honor of being a member of the Photographic Society of America. In 1951, the Photo Union of Yugoslavia awarded him the title of Master of Photography. Dabac received the Vladimir Nazor Lifetime Achievement Award in 1967. In the same year, he began mentoring Marija Braut. In total, he took around 200,000 photos, most of them in the city of Zagreb. He had a studio in Ilica 17 where he worked for about thirty years. He married the opera singer Julia Grill in 1937 and participated in the Second World War on the side of the partisans from 1943. Dabac died on a bus to Zagreb’s Gornji grad on May 9, 1970.