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Photoreporter, now aged 89, has been awarded recently from the president of Greek Photoreporters for his contribution to the selective memory of humanity. He still goes to his office everyday, waiting a call for work.
Some friends called him 'the Bear' for his presence. U.S. General Colin Powell had said for him 'look how he orders the Generals to stand so he takes a picture! He is a General too!. It has also been said for him that he directs his subjects like Fellini. He traveled all over the world (7 times to USA, 6 times to USSR, Australia, Africa, Europe) and shot happiness and tragedy: 3 Olympic Games, 2 wars, thousand of people, from politicians, actors, singers, sportsmen to everyday people. His quest for perspective gave him the nickname 'the ladder' as he often shoots people from a four stepper. An autobiographic album with his work has been recently published, with 230 pictures spanning from 1940s to 1990s and it is called 'Ioannes Kyriakides, A life full of pictures'.
His first camera was bought with coupons from a newspaper, it was a box brownie Kodak. He got his first paid job as a teenager when he caught on film a jockey flying off a horse. During his early twenties on a visit to the photographic store of Salvador Cunio in Salonica. in his pocket he had just 1/35th of the value of the camera he was looking at. The owner, ordered his employee to give him the camera, regardless of the loss he would make. When Kyriakides asked 'how come' the shop owner said 'I've read your eyes'. Kyriakides paid the full price to the shop owner eight months later, after hard work.
His motto is 'Don't stop disturbing'.