Historic Motorsports Collection Joins Repository of Over Two and a Half Million Images
NAPLES, Fla., Feb. 1, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- The Historic André Van Bever Photography Archive has been acquired by Revs Institute®, the esteemed institution dedicated to the study and celebration of the automobile's rich history and cultural significance. Home to over 120 archival collections from the history of the automobile and automotive culture, this includes the remarkable André Van Bever Photograph Collection.
"Throughout his career, André Van Bever chronicled motor racing history, from Juan Manuel Fangio in 1949 to Niki Lauda in 1975, making him one of the most renowned visual witnesses of post-war motorsport," said Scott George, Curator of Collections, Revs Institute, Inc. The archive, comprising nearly 29,000 photographs, now finds its home at Revs Institute, marking a significant milestone in its mission to preserve and celebrate the heritage of the automobile. The images will be indexed and digitized, making Van Bever's work even more accessible to researchers, scholars, and the motorsport community through the Revs Digital Library.
Born in 1922 in Brussels, diverse interests marked André's early life, from trains to mountaineering and horseback riding. His family's background in jewelry did not resonate with him, and photography became his true calling—a medium that allowed him to explore his love for action, discovery, and artistry. André Van Bever's photographic journey commenced in 1946 when, at the early age of 18, he covered a motorcycle race at the Bois de la Cambre in Brussels as a favor for a friend. This event set the stage for a career that spanned over four decades, capturing the essence of motorsport and its iconic figures.
Together with his wife and collaborator, Nicole Englebert-Van Bever, André covered the great European races of the 1950s and 1960s. As a freelancer, he continued to cover racing until 1975. His portfolio includes images from his 28-year tenure as the official photographer for the Belgian newspaper Les Sports. His work graced the pages of publications such as Royal Auto, Le Moniteur de l'Automobile, Sport Moteur, Virage, Autosport, Auto Motor und Sport, Car and Driver, and more. Notably, he contributed photographs to books authored by racing driver and journalist Paul Frère, solidifying their enduring partnership.
Beyond motorsport, André Van Bever had an innate passion for photography that extended into his personal life. He documented friends, strangers, and the world around him, always seeking to capture the natural, living aspect of his subjects. His commitment to preserving the history of motorsport and his artistic approach to photography made him an iconic figure in the industry. As he also was an excellent gentleman-rider, he would eventually return to racing horses at the age of 53.
"As a custodian of automotive history, I am delighted to see André Van Bever's iconic photography find its home at Revs Institute," says Miles Collier, founder of Revs Institute. "Through his lens, Van Bever's work has immortalized the rich history of motorsport, and its inclusion in the Revs Digital Library ensures that it will continue to inspire and inform generations of automotive researchers, enthusiasts, and historians."
Revs Institute wishes to recognize the efforts of Nicole Englebert-Van Bever, whose tireless efforts to preserve André Van Bever's legacy have made this acquisition possible.
About Revs Institute
Widely regarded as one of the top automotive museums in the world, Revs Institute, in Naples, Florida, USA, is dedicated to the study and celebration of the automobile. It exists to foster a new level of understanding of the automobile, not only as a technological device, but as an agent for social and economic change worthy to be considered among the masterpieces of human creativity. Housed in the museum is a collection of over 100 influential automobiles that meet rigorous standards for historical importance, rarity and technical, aesthetic, or social significance. Revs Institute also has an extensive archive and library of books, periodicals, photos, ephemera, brochures, advertisements, and multilingual technical publications. We welcome journalist inquiries. The library is available as a resource for those interested in automotive history. Revs Institute is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization, housed in an 80,000 square foot, purpose-built facility. For more information, including hours, tour times, and ticket prices, visit revsinstitute.org or call +1 (239) 687-7287. Regrettably, walk-up visitors cannot be accommodated.
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