Umbo (Otto Umbehr, German, 1902-1980) was active in the Wandervogel youth movement before entering the Bauhaus Weimar to study with Johannes Itten and at the metal crafts studio in 1921. He moved to Berlin in 1923 and held a handful of jobs as varied as a house painter, clown, and cinematographer’s assistant. Encouraged by Paul Citroen, he took up photography in 1926 quickly to become one of the most innovative purveyors of avant-garde photography, exhibiting his works at the 1929 Film und Foto exhibition in Stuttgart. In 1928 he co-founded the Dephot photo agency and worked until the 1940s as a press photographer for international magazines. His entire archive was destroyed in a 1943 air raid; from 1945 on he worked for local news publications and as a house photographer for the Kestner society in Hanover. In his later years, Umbo’s work was increasingly overlooked by the public, only to be rediscovered in the 1970s. Rudolf Kicken was among the first to establish contact to Umbo and exhibit his work. The 1980 Umbo portfolio by Galerie Rudolf Kicken collected the most important works by the artist; Kicken was able not only to locate the extant vintage prints by Umbo but also — as he had promised the artist shortly before his death — to maintain his life’s work, together with Umbo’s daughter, in order to give the entire body to a German museum. This goal has now been achieved. Umbo’s artistic estate was acquired jointly by the Stiftung Bauhaus Dessau, Sprengel Museum Hannover, and the Berlinische Galerie, Landesmuseum für Moderne Kunst, Fotografie und Architektur in 2016.