Richard Avedon Portraits by Maria Morris Hambourg

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Richard Avedon is one of the most influential photographers of the second half of the 20th century. His portrait work comprises an authoritative record of the era and, as a staff photographer of "Harper's Bazaar" and later for "Vogue", Avedon redefined what a fashion photograph is. With uncompromising directness, Avedon portrayed his subjects against a white background, with no extraneous details to distract from tthe essential specificity of face, gaze, dress and gesture. His work includes mesmerizing images of Truman Capote, Willem de Kooning, Samuel Beckett, Francis Bacon and Marily Monroe, as well as of the uncelebrated Americans of his project "In the American West". Spanning Richard Avedon's entire career, starting from the late 1940s, this volume offers a selection of his photographic portraits. It is published to accompany a major exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

About Maria Morris Hambourg

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Richard Avedon was born in 1923. From 1944 to 1950 he studied photography at the design laboratory of the New School of Social Research in New York. He has worked as a staff photographer for many widely read magazines, such as Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. He has also served as a visual consultant for Paramount Studios. Avedon is well known for his photographs of all types of people, from the famous, as epitomized by Marilyn Monroe, to the fashion model, to the everyday person. His photographs are frequently close-ups that capture the spirit and mood of his subject. He is also noted for his ability to capture the sensual in his photographs. Avedon has numerous collections of photographs including In the American West and An Autobiography. Avedon also merged photography and literature in his two of his collections-Observations, with text by Truman Capote, and Nothing Personal, with text by James Baldwin. Hambourg, curator of photographs at the Metropolitan Museum. Mia Fineman is a writer and curator in New York. She is the author of When Elephants Paint: The Quest of Two Russian Artists to Save the Elephants of Thailand and has contributed essays to monographs on Walker Evans, Richard Avedon, Gabriel Orozco, Sean Scully, and others. Her writing on art appears regularly in the New York Times and Slate.
Published September 17, 2002 by Harry N. Abrams. 64 pages
Genres: Arts & Photography. Non-fiction

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This slipcased, accordion-fold collection of 50 black and white portraits from the past 50 years, produced for the exhibition and including an essay by curator Maria Morris Hambourg and Met research assistant Mia Fineman, as well as a brief word from the photographer himself, will do little to ch...

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