or more than three decades, photographer Heinz Kluetmeier's pictures have virtually defined what great sports photography is all about. In a world where television and magazines have saturated our imaginations to numbness with an endless stream of great sports images, Kluetmeier's photographs manage to perform the unthinkable: they cause us to pause, to examine - and, most importantly, to feel.
Indeed, if there is one defining characteristic of Kluetmeier's images, it is their ability to draw us into the passion of the moment, to make us experience the emotions of that moment - whether it's an instant of victory or defeat, of joy or sadness.
"The thing to remember about sports is that more often than not, the emotional reaction to winning or losing is a much more significant picture than the touchdown being scored, or the home run being hit," he explains. "It's the emotional reaction that everyone can relate to in their own life. Because ultimately, that's what life is about."
And "life" is what Kluetmeier's pictures are about. Though the primary focus of his work for most of his career has been sports, he does not regard himself strictly as a sports photographer, but rather, a journalist.
"Photojournalism and sports photography are the same thing except that the photojournalistic subject happens to be sports," he says. "Photojournalism is telling a story, it's taking pictures of something as it evolves without controlling it, manipulating it, without being anything but being there and looking at it through your point of view."
Kodak is proud to present this look at the life, philosophy and images of Heinz Kluetmeier.