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The Past from Above

Georg Gerster died on Friday, 8 February 2019 at his home in Switzerland.

In 2006, the British Museum held a major photographic exhibition for the very first time, presenting Georg Gerster's unique collection of aerial photographs of archaeological sites across the globe.

Gerster worked in aerial photography for over 50 years. His first archaeological photographic flight in 1963 documented temples, pyramids and fortresses in ancient Nubia, modern Sudan. Over the following decades he photographed in over one hundred countries across six continents.

As a body of work, Gerster's photographs are unique. He worked in countries where it is now impossible to take aerial photos - Syria, Iran and Iraq, for example - and where ancient sites are under threat or have already been damaged by ongoing war and conflict. Others that he has photographed have since disappeared due to human intervention or environmental degradation.

A huge retrospective of his work can be found in the book The Past from Above, published by Frances Lincoln.
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