Lillian Bassman: Women

Front Cover
Harry N. Abrams, 2009 - Design - 228 pages
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"Lilliam Bassman is a beloved figure in the pantheon of fashion photographers. Her signature style offers a sensuous and intimate vision of modern women. In New York in the 1950s and 1960s, where sophisticated women were expanding the scope of their lives while being forced into traditional feminine roles, Bassman sought, as she put it, "to photograph fashion with a woman's eye for a woman's intimate feelings." As art historian and critic Deborah Solomon says in her introduction, "The women who appear in her photographs tend to be tall and attractive, and they have a kind of seductive expression that comes from keeping secrets."" "Like her contemporaries Richard Avedon and Irving Penn, Bassman exploited the medium of fashion photography to capture a dream world of cool repose. So strong is the pull of this vision that it has influenced the fashion designers themselves: John Galliano of Dior has said of Bassman's photographs, with their "painterly strokes of light," that "it was this technique and spirit that I wanted to capture in the dressmaking process." The most desirable models of her time loved to work with her, and even agreed to pose in lingerie and in the nude, because they wanted to see themselves as she would see them. Bassman turned away from fashion photography from the end of the 1960s until 1994 when she began to accept new fashion assignments and to reprint her earlier photographs with an artist's eye for emotional and formal expression, essentially creating the body of work for which she is famous today." "With more than 150 of her best images reproduced in stunning tritone, including many never published before and others not seen since they appeared in the pages of the legendary Harper's Bazaar of the 1950s, Lillian Bassman: Women provides a retrospective view of an extraordinary career in photography." --Book Jacket.

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About the author (2009)

Deborah Solomon is the author of Utopia Parkway: The Life and Work of Joseph Cornell and Jackson Pollock: A Biography. She writes the weekly "Questions For" column in the New York Times Magazine, where she is also known for her profiles of people in the art world. Previously, she was art critic for the Wall Street Journal. She lives in New York City.

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