Dr Werner Kissling is an intriguing man. Born into a wealthy Silesian brewing family in 1895, he died penniless in a Dumfries nursing home in 1988 leaving only a suitcase packed with photographs. During his life he was a Photographer and amateur ethnographer/anthropologist;a gentleman,and a scholar, a German diplomat and an aristocrat who left Germany in 1931 after a posting to London. Interred in the Tower during the war , he showed antipathy towards the Nazis. A brother of his was involved in the assassination attempt on Hitler and committed suicide in 1944. His work came to my attention while researching photography ,ethnography and anthropology for my PhD study at Nottingham Trent University. He was mainly known for his studies of the Scottish Isles Eriskay and South Uist , but spent several years photographing in New Zealand and North Yorkshire during the 1950's & 1960's.The Yorkshire work rests in the Folk Vernacular Archive held in Leeds University. It may be a cul-de-sac in my studies so far, but no reproductions of these images of Yorkshire craftsmen exist save for dry catalogue descriptions. Further research therefore into the contents of his imagery, and that of others who contributed imagery and audio, will be made soon in order to establish any precedents that may help me locate a starting point for my practice based research. In the meanwhile here are links ( please cut and paste them into your browser) to a documentary film made by him about Eriskay in 1934,
and a documentary about him in Gaelic made by Michael Russell.