Jan Langer is a photographer who wanted to ask some important questions. He notes that in the modern day Czech Republic (or Czechia as it has become), that there are now over 1,400 centenarians – that is, people who have lived to the age of 100. He also says that in 50 years’ time there will be more than 14,000 people of a similar age in the country.
He wanted to see how such people are marked by the passage of time and how they remain the same. This striking series of portraits that he calls “The Faces of a Century” are the answer to those questions. They’re quite astonishing.
10. Marie Buresova
This is Marie Buersova. She was just 23 when her picture was first captured and it was on the day that she was married. At the age of 101, you can still see the young girl that was even if her features do seem to have somewhat hardened over time.
9. Antonin Kovar
This suave-looking young man is Antonin Kovar. His first image was taken at the age of 25 when he was the Bandmaster of His Own Band. His face seems to have softened a little over the years but it’s unmistakably the same person at the age of 102.
You’ll also be amazed at number 6 on our list.
8. Vlasta Cizkova
Vlasta Cizkova’s transformation over the years has been quite remarkable. You can still see traces of the 23-year-old, who had just finished high school when the image was captured, in the 101-year-old but they’re not as clear as with some of the other people Jan Langer involved in this project.
7. Antonin Baldrman
The teenager was a skilled locksmith and well respected in his town. Antonin Baldrman at 101 looks a long way removed from that young man. There are hints of the boy that was and the cut of the jaw is decidedly the same but time has very much taken its toll on his features.
6. Prokop Vejdelek
This dashing chap is Prokop Vejdelek and he was enlisting in the armed forces at the age of 22 when his first photo was taken. The 101-year-old version of him looks wiser and there seems to be a hint of mischief about him that was absent from the serious youth.
Wait until you see the change in number three on this list.