Tuesday 27 October 2009

Richard Avedon

So I had a strange post last week… I was thinking many thoughts and I have now had time to sort them out. But today I want to continue with photography a little bit, since I think it is an art very much entangled in the giant web of ‘Design’ and I find it not only to be extremely relevant, but very much important and influential for anyone thinking about or observing design.

One of my favorite photographers is the legendary Richard Avedon, a fine art, portrait, and fashion photographer who lived from 1923 to 2004. In his fashion portraits, he became famous for portraying models in action and full of life, contrary to the past photos of fashion models for magazines in which they were portrayed still and almost lifeless.
He also worked heavily in portraits, photographing everyone from Marilyn Monroe and Bjork to farmers, cowboys and beekeepers in the middle of the American countryside. His photographs capture an essence of humanity that is rarely seen in daily life; he photographs all of his subjects equally and treats them all with respect, and it shows in the faces and eyes of every one of his subjects. This sense of equality along with his incredible talent, are two factors that distinguish him as one of the most important photographers of our time.

A few months ago, I saw the Richard Avedon exhibit at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and I must say, I had tears in my eyes. I am not sure why, but some of his photographs just consumed me, and afterwards, I felt a little bit more complete. Sounds cheesy, I know, but honestly, I felt like I knew something new about the world that I didn’t know before. I suppose that makes a truly good photographer…

All Photos taken by Richard Avedon. Images found here:

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