Born in Paris on 14 August 1910.
His father, an immigrant from Odessa, had a photo studio on Montmartre, where Willy Ronis acquired his early skills in photography.
Under the impact of works by the American photographers Anselm Adams and Alfred Stieglitz, Ronis began to explore photography.
After his father’s death in 1949, Ronis shut down the family studio and began to work for the Rapho photo agency, with which Brassaï and other famous photographers cooperated.
In the early 1950s Ronis becomes the first French photographer to work for the Life magazine.
In the 1950s Ronis taught photography at the Ecoles des Beaux-Arts of Avignon, Aix-en-Provence and Marseille.
In 1953 New York’s Museum of Modern Art held an exhibition of five French photographers, including Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Willy Ronis.
A winner of numerous prizes and grants, Ronis had his works reviewed in dozens of publications, monographs and art books. Major museum and private collections the world over store works by Ronis.
Willy Ronis died in Paris in 2005.