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Entries in Photography (30)

Sunday
Oct302011

Andy Warhol - The Factory

The Factory with Bob Dylan

The Factory.

It was Andy Warhol’s NYC Mecca, a bastion of the eccentric, the hip cradle for artsy types who would go on to be known as the Warhol superstars. With a blunt audacity that might carry shock value even in this day and age, The Factory was downright outlandish in the early 1960’s. Noted for its groundbreaking parties and revolving door of influential artists, The Factory, at its essence, was a haven for Warhol’s brand of pop art. John Cale, a Factory regular, mused "It wasn't called the Factory for nothing. It was where the assembly line for the silk- screens happened. While one person was making a silkscreen, somebody else would be filming a screen test. Every day, something new."

Rolling Stone Brian Jones & Warhol 1966

As Warhol’s legend grew, he was slaving away nonstop on his paintings. To create his art, Warhol employed silk-screens in order to mass-produce images (as capitalist corporations mass produce consumer goods). To keep the machine running, Warhol assembled his Superstars: drag queens, adult film actors, musicians, drug addicts, free-thinkers and socialites. It was these Superstars who turned the now-demolished, dingy building into an iconic legend.

When not painting inside the all-silver interior (made so with tin foil, paint and balloons), The Factory was an anchor in which to make films, commissions, sculptures and shoes. It also served as a bohemian den of sorts, a joint where celebrities such as Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Salvador Dali and Truman Capote hung their artistic hats. Reed’s "Walk on the Wild Side", his best known song, is about the superstars he hung out with at the Factory. He mentions Holly Woodlawn, Candy Darling, and a few others directly.

Warhol’s now-treasured film library, at the time considered obscene and unlawful, was almost entirely shot at his second home. In an unfortunate attempt at dimming Warhol’s shining light, he was shot himself inside the walls of The Factory. It was the home of the Soup Cans and the Marilyn Monroe prints, and the birthplace of pop art. The Factory was many things to many people, a blurry dynamo that followed no rules and skewed the line. More than a drab dwelling, it was Warhol, it was the Superstars, and in the annals of art, it was reminiscent of the society of the era it forged its name in.

The Factory was, simply, a revolution.

Friday
Oct212011

Timeless Style of Fred Astaire 

"I know that once in awhile I've been on lists of best-dressed men," says Fred Astaire, the famous star of stage and screen, "but it always comes as a surprise to me. I never think of myself as spic and span or all duded out—just as someone who wants to be comfortable and satisfy his own taste. Of course," he says, "in my business you have to dress for the role. At home, I dress for myself." - Fred Astaire GQ interview, 1957

Co-Starring with Audrey Hepburn in " Funny Face", 1957

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Wednesday
Oct122011

Smash His Camera 

The documentary film Smash His Camera exposes viewers to the life and times of Ron Galella—arguably the most infamous paparazzi of the last half-century. Galella's bulldog tactics and antics have enabled him to candidly capture those of celebrity stature.

Central Park October 7, 1971

The film highlights the triumph and genius of Galella's work and his failure to be endured by those caught in his gaze. No one escaped his lens, and some were the focal point for many years, including Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. At one point after being hounded by Galella across New York City, she famously directed an accompanying secret service agent to smash his camera.

Images Ron Galella

Tuesday
Oct112011

"All Access" The Rock 'n' Roll Photography of Ken Regan 

From the Band's Last Waltz to the concert for Bangladesh photographer Ken Regan has been using his camera to capture intimate moments in Rock and Roll history. Regan's new book, All Access: The Rock ’n’ Roll Photography of Ken Regan (published by Insight Editions), is a visual archive 304 pages and more than 400 black & white, and color photographs covering four decades of music.

Available October 20th.

"You have to know the moment before it happens. To sense it, to feel it. Whatever this intuitive sense, is what my longtime friend has. Many times I've been onstage only to see Ken's beady left eye drilling through me with that wry grin under his camera and know he's got the shot he was after."

- Keith Richards

Click to view more images.

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Saturday
Oct082011

Charles Cushman's New York, 1940's

Hot Sweet Potato Cart

Poverty Black & White

Chinese Store

Children Of The Lower East Side

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Friday
Sep302011

Harry Callahan at 100

Chicago 1961

Washington D.C.'s National Gallery of Art celebrates the work of photographer Harry Callahan.

The exhibit showcases the photographer's gosthly experiments with multiple exposures, city street scenes, and intimate portraits of his wife. October 2 to March 4, 2012.

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Wednesday
Sep142011

Peter Beard

Peter Beard was a Tommy Hilfiger ad before the fashion designer was ever born, a male Audrey Hepburn, a fashion iconoclast cross-bred with Indiana Jones and James Dean. He has been married to a supermodel and has called Jackie O, Warhol and Capote his pals, and thanks to the blue blood that runs in his veins, it is hardly a risk to label his life as jet set.

With such labels, it might be difficult to grasp the reality that Peter Beard is an American photography legend. Difficult only until you see his work.

Beard’s creative juices flow into his collage-work and diaries. As a child who was transfixed by the captured memories that photographs bring, the diaries began to amass at an early age. Eventually, Beard was inspired to take a pilgrimage to Earth’s Cradle in 1955 upon digesting the literary giant Out of Africa. Snapping endless photos of the wildlife and nature, he began putting them into collages, employing animal blood and remains aside newspaper clippings to craft his images.

From there, his personal life, the glittery worlds of fashion, Tinseltown and rock and roll, intersected in the ultimate juxtaposition, with everything from the invasive Western colonization of Africa to the Kennedy reign and the New York art scene. In Beard’s eccentric creations, which continue today, he uses everything from India ink, dried leaves and insects, his own blood even, to portray the world as seen through his textured, often crowded eyes. Sometimes controversial, always fascinating and diverse, Beard’s work shows him to be both a hunter and a gatherer; a hunter of life, a gatherer of subject. The camera, it is merely a base tool to the stories he weaves.

Peter Beard’s enduring sculptures of his passage in time are already a genius collective, a national treasure. On his walls, he holds an Art History degree from Yale University, where he enrolled in 1957, but even at such a refined institution, it is hard to imagine Beard as the student;

Peter Beard is a student of life and culture. Art, a trivial thing to calculate, is embodied in everything Beard touches.

It is with irony that Peter Beard was able to so eloquently capture the essence of all that entered his lens. If someone was to photograph the man himself, they would certainly snare the aesthetics of a rugged and handsome man, timelessly cool. But no snapshot of Peter Beard can ever unfold the story of the icon- well traveled, well versed, well lived.

Maybe there is an art to his elusiveness as well.

Thursday
Aug252011

Brooklyn Teen Gang, The Jokers, 1959

In 1959 there were about 1000 gang members in and around the streets of New York City, primarily troubled teenage males from the outer boroughs. That spring, up-and-coming photographer Bruce Davidson read an article about the street violence in Prospect Park and decided to document this rebellious youth lifestyle, just a bridge away.

Connecting with a social worker for initial contact, Davidson embedded himself in the Jokers quickly becoming a daily observer with the ability to chronicle their dark and secretive culture. For several months he followed the Jokers around their turf throughout Prospect Park , Helen's Diner and Coney Island hangouts.

As he would later pen for his Magnum Photos book " I met a small group of teenagers called the Jokers, I was 25 and they were 16. I could have easily been taken for one of them."

Images Bruce Davidson

Friday
Jul152011

American Staycation

Thursday
Jun092011

The Race

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