Michael Datikash

From Russia With Lens

A former staff photographer for Tass, Michael Datikash’s focus now is American Jewish life.


In November 1991, Michael Datikash was driving his daughter to school in Tbilisi, Georgia, when two cars passed him, one on each side, and the drivers started shooting at each other.

From Tass To The Jewish Week

Staff photographer, both an artist and a journalist, presents a digital gallery.


In his native Tblisi, capital of Georgia (then a republic in the Soviet Union), Michael Datikash (then Malkhaz Datikashvili) received his first camera on his 15th birthday, as a gift from his uncle. It was an amateur's model, Russian-made, and cost "ten or fifteen dollars," Datikash says.

A resident of the United States since 1991, staff photographer for The Jewish Week most of that time, was fascinated by the "magic" of developing his own photographs, in pre-digital days, and of making an individual, artistic "expression" with a camera.

Israel On My Mind


The first time Michael Datikash, native of the Soviet republic of Georgia, went to Israel in the late 1980s, he was a staff photographer for the TASS news agency. He spent a month in the Jewish state, and returned to the USSR with photos that reflected his visions of Israel. TASS ran his pictures, but his communist bosses were not pleased — they had anticipated photos more critical of Israel. Datikash, who immigrated to the United States in 1991 and has worked as staff photographer for The Jewish Week for 22 years, retuned to Israel earlier this month, for the seventh time.

Photographs by Michael Datikash
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