Joseph Pilates in Unique Photographs

Photographs by I.C. Rapoport

We are privileged enough at Pilates Central to have a permanent exhibition of rare photographs of Joseph Pilates at work in his New York studio in 1961.

They were taken by the acclaimed photographer I.C. Rapoport and signed by the latter after his praised talk at Pilates Central in 2005.

Joseph Pilates

Read a longer article about the History and Origins of Pilates on our website by clicking here.

Joseph Pilates at Work with his Clients
Photo credit: I.C. Rapoport

Memories of The Man – Joseph Pilates

Romana Kryzanowska, an 81 year-old who still teaches Pilates: “I remember Joe and how he named his studio. In glass in black letters, there it was, “Contrology: The Art of Control.”

She came to it as a reluctant, 18 year-old ballet-dancer.

“He had white hair. He has a very tanned, muscular body. In boxing, he lost an eye. He had all the muscles of a fencer.

“He had a studio on 8th avenue, on the second floor and it was not very big and kind of dirty.

“He was introduced to me and I thought he was a crazy old man. I couldn’t understand why Mr Balanchine wanted me to go.

“I hated the first lesson. I hated the second lesson. But by the third lesson, I noticed that my malady, a problem with my ankle, was better.”

Source: Radio 4 Documentary

Joseph Pilates on Reformer
Photo credit: I.C. Rapoport

The Photographer – I.C. Rapoport

I.C. Rapoport is a renowned photojournalist and screenwriter. He photographed everyone from Samuel Beckett and Fidel Castro to President JF Kennedy.

In 1961, I.C. Rapoport was fortunate enough to photograph Joseph Pilates in his New York “gymnasium”.

Pilates Central and the wider world of Pilates are lucky to have this rare glimpse of Joseph Pilates at work in his own studio.

Visit his site:

Purchasing I.C. Rapoport’s Photographs Of Joseph Pilates

Joseph Pilates Poster
Photo Credit: I.C. Rapoport

Those interested in buying signed prints of I.C. Rapoport’s photographs of Joseph Pilates should let us and know – and we can make arrangements with I.C. Rapoport for you to purchase them.


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