One of the highpoints of ABdigital has been taking pictures for various clients, including Teknion and others with Hedrich Blessing in Chicago.


Pictured: A compilation of some classic work, excluding their groundbreaking pictures for the 1938 World’s Fair in Chicago.

If you are going to take pictures of interiors why not work with people whose parents took pictures of Mies, hung out with Wright and documented the original Marina Towers? Now The Chicago History Museum houses the archive of the first 50 years of photography (1929–1979), where it is available for viewing by the public. The legendary photographers collaborated with architects and designers both nationally and internationally but also undertook non-architectural work; industrial, product, editorial, and corporate photography. Here is their story.

About Hedrich Blessing [1]

The firm was founded by 21-year-old photographer Ken Hedrich, who had studied his craft at the New York Institute of Photography, and his business partner Henry Blessing. Blessing left the business in 1931 but it retained its name Hedrich-Blessing with its new partners being two of Ken Hedrich’s brothers, Ed and Bill Hedrich who joined the firm in 1930 and 1931 respectively. They were later joined by their youngest brother Jack Hedrich who was an administrator and president for 40 odd years.

“Don’t make photographs, think them” was a pronouncement by Ken Hedrich that became the motto of the firm which became famous for its innovative architectural photographs capturing the spirit of buildings. As Jack Hedrich said ‘”They were really the first ones to change architectural photography from reporting images to artistic images”.

Retrieved online. 5.1.2023

Hedrich-Blessing remained a family-run business until the retirement of Jim Hedrich, son of Ken Hedrich, in 2003. The studio finally closed in 2017 when two of the firm’s principal photographers formed Hall + Merrick Photographers which now trades under the name of Hall + Merrick + McCaugherty. As well as the large archive of photographs owned by the Chicago Historical Society and housed at the Chicago History Museum, photographs are also held in the photographic archive of The University of Chicago, the Prints and Photographs Division, Library of CongressWashington, D.C and in the Conway LibraryThe Courtauld Institute of ArtLondon.

[1] All content retrieved from Wikkipedia. May 1, 2023. See source for additional attribution.


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