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November 25, 2021

Interview with Estrellita Karsh

Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002), Yousuf and Estrellita Karsh at Little Wings, Their Home in Ottawa, 1967, gelatin silver print. © Estate of Yousuf Karsh

In conjunction with the exhibition The World of Yousuf Karsh: A Private Essence, Mary-Dailey Desmarais, Chief Curator of the MMFA, interviewed the woman who shared a life with the illustrious photographer for 40 years, Estrellita Karsh.

Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) is considered one of the greatest portrait photographers of the 20th century. Thanks to the extraordinary generosity of his wife, Estrellita, the MMFA is the grateful recipient of 111 photographs created by the artist. They form the heart of an exhibition that is on view until January 30, 2022.

At over 90, Estrellita Karsh continues to pursue her intellectual passions as well as her support of the Estate of Yousuf Karsh and her late husband’s legacy. In this interview, she shares her memories of their life together, but also of her own work as a medical researcher, writer and historian.

CONVERSATION | Estrellita Karsh • Mary-Dailey Desmarais

The World of Yousuf Karsh: A Private Essence
Until January 30, 2022
Jean-Noël Desmarais Pavilion – Level 3

Credits and curatorial team An exhibition organized by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and curated by Hilliard T. Goldfarb, Senior Curator Emeritus, MMFA. The World of Yousuf Karsh: A Private Essence was made possible by the generous contribution of the exhibition’s patron, Michel Phaneuf. The Museum wishes to acknowledge the invaluable contributions of its official sponsor, Denalt Paints, and thank its media partner La Presse. The Museum is profoundly grateful to the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications, to the Canada Council for the Arts and to the Conseil des arts de Montréal for their ongoing support.

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