Josef Breitenbach was a photographer whose manipulated images and stark photographs were part of the Surrealistic movement. He studied philosophy and art history at Ludwig-Maximilian University and was a left wing political activist early in his career. Breitenbach was self-taught and made his first pictures in 1927 while traveling for the wine business. He opened his first photography studio in 1930 in Munich where he ran a successful business photographing prominent actors, cabaret performers, writers and political figures. When Hitler became Chancellor in 1933, Breitenbach fled to Paris, where he came into contact with the Surrealist movement.