9th International Congress of Turcology Proceedings Book
Kazimierz Kuzyk (1892-1963) Forgotten Photographer of the Ottoman Army and DynastyPiotr Nykıel
Most of the pictures showing officers and soldiers of the Ottoman XV Corps during its expedition to the East Galicia in 1916-1917 were taken by anonymous photographers from Austro-Hungarian or German units they fought shoulder to shoulder with. However, personal details of one of them have been recently discovered. His name was Kazimierz Kuzyk. In 1914, Kuzyk enlisted in the Austro-Hungarian army as a photographer in the Field Balloon Unit. Since he spent most of his time in the village of Kurzany, where the HQ of the Ottoman 19th division was, he photographed mainly officers and soldiers of this unit. However, the most precious pictures he left to future generations were those of Princes Ömer Faruk and Abdürrahim Hayri, taken during their short visits to Galicia. Kuzyk’s pictures of the Army Group commander Gen. Eduard von Böhm-Ermolli visiting the Ottoman 19th division in January 1917 are the only known photographs of this event. Unlike so many of the jaunty men and officers in his pictures, Kuzyk survived both the war in Galicia and on the Italian Front, where he was transferred to, shortly before the end of WWI. He worked with his camera until his death in 1963. Personal documents related to Kuzyk’s life are being kept in the Archive of the Cracow Province of the Discalced Carmelites Order. His photographs of Turks in Galicia are in the above-mentioned archive, as well as in Irena and Mieczysław Mazaraki Museum in Chrzanów, Poland, in the Austrian National Library and in private collections.