Monday, October 5, 2009

Irving Penn @ The Getty

The Getty Center currently hosts a superb exhibit of Irving Penn's Small Trades -- a 252-portrait series shot while on assignment in Paris to photograph the 1950 Fall Collections for Vogue.
Though better known for his fashion photography, "Penn would continue to maintain a balance in his work -- alternating fashion, advertising, still life, nudes, portraiture and images of varying 'dissolving cultures,'" says Native Intelligence, adding that this particular series "was inspired by Penn's admiration of photographer August Sander's portraiture of every-day German people, Eugène Atget's images of Parisian street life, and his own desire to 'record what was disappearing.'"
There is a quaint eeriness in Penn's recording of Paris' petits métiers. A beautiful journey through time and the ephemeral that leaves the visitor with goose pimples.
UPDATE 10/07/09: Irving Penn dies @ 92

Irving Penn's artwork via

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