books pdf Saul Leiter - Retrospektive: Haus der Fotografie / Deichtorhallen Hamburg: Retrospektive / Retrospective By Vince Aletti – Andy-palmer.co.uk
Why, oh why did it have to take so long Had the Post War Baby Boomer Generation been aware of Leiter in the sixties and seventies, when so many of us caught the fire, selected and clung to our photo heros for decades, and started shooting, the history of photography would likely have looked rather different.The Steidl published Early Color is a teaser compared to this, but a necessary volume, nonetheless This magnificent volume, beautifully done, is comprehensive, covering Leiter s color and B W photography and his painting art Often the manner of Leiter s seeing in B W and color and his use of color remind me of my number one photo hero, Ernst Haas, but Leiter s way of seeing is also very different Both created virtual oeuvres of modernist, expressionist abstracts with their cameras, but this reviewer s impression is that SL played with unfocus much aggressively than EH, whose abstracts are either focused or smoothed using movement and slow shutter speeds Both pioneered new ways of using the small format camera in the earliest days of 35mm color film In their color work, both are or were colorists, and both used a lot of black in their private work I wonder how much each knew of the other and each other s work SL s use of color and tonal masses, often in the foreground, and of unexpected framing opportunities caught with exquisite timing are his alone but have come to be among the compositional staples of such as Costa Manos and Alex Webb now.The several essays summarize information from and about SL and his painting and photography and place him among the so called New York School of photographers from the 30s to the 60s and, in some cases, until today Thankfully, SL is still with us today.There is a look to both the painting and the photography apparent in masters work from that era, even though each practitioner has had their own contributions, that ties them to what was going on in the world of art in the early half of the century The number of masters was finite enough that our generation could pick some favorites and follow their careers to the present day, in continuing work or posthumous publication and exhibition It is a shame and a huge lost opportunity that our generation did not know much, if anything, about Saul LeiterHad SL s work been in the books and photographic magazines of the 60s and 70s, there is no doubt IMHO that he would have had major influences on people s taking up photography, informed how they began to see, and become one of the revered pioneers in modern monochrome and color photography The exposure to examples of his painting art is also delightful, and reminds one of Cartier Bresson s links of the drawing arts to his photography.All this reviewer can say is, Late is at least better than never Thank you, Saul Leiter, for finally allowing us to know something of the range of your work, and thank you, the publishers, for finally giving us a worthy introduction to his work. Saul Leiter B In Pittsburgh Has Only In Recent Years Received His Due As One Of The Great Pioneers Of Color Photography This Can Perhaps Be Attributed To The Fact That Leiter Saw Himself For A Long Time Mainly As A PainterAfter Coming To New York In , He Exhibited Alongside Abstract Expressionists Like Willem De Kooning Before Beginning In The Late S To Take Photographs Like Robert Frank Or Helen Levitt, He Found His Motifs On The Streets Of New York, But At The Same Time Was Visibly Interested In Abstraction Edward Steichen Was One Of The First To Discover Leiter S Photography, Showing It In The S In Two Important Exhibitions At New York S Museum Of Modern Art Back Then Color Photography Was Regarded As Low Art, Fit Only For Advertising Leiter Accordingly Worked Primarily As A Fashion Photographer, For Magazines Such As Esquire And Harper S Bazaar Nearly Forty Years Would Go By Before His Extraordinary Artistic Color Photography Was RediscoveredThis Book, Published To Mark The First Major Retrospective Of Leiter S Work Anywhere In The World, Features For The First Time, In Addition To His Early Black And White And Color Images, His Fashion Photography, The Overpainted Nudes, As Well As His Paintings And Sketchbooks Saul Leiter was never one of the big names in photography, not like Avedon or Sherman That s a shame He was a pioneer in the use of color and his unique view of life and the streets holds a humanity often lacking in street photography He saw people, not just decisive moments.The book is a good overview of Leiter s work The reproductions are good and the text gives some context. I adore this book Photographer Saul Leiter had a superb, ultra hip 1950 s bebop flavored eye for high abstraction he turned ordinary NYC street scenes into dazzlingly stylish, poetic, elliptical, geometrically beautiful abstractions and all in striking, lean, novel color combinations, as spare and pared down as a cool Miles Davis riff Lovers of AbEx, NYC and Midcentury sensibilities simply mustn t miss this wonderful book Leiter s photos from the 1950 s and early 1960 s look as hip and stylish as they did when they were first taken Includes a number of his drawings for VOGUE magazine, which I confess I like less well than his street scene photos Dazzling and inspiring, this high quality art book is very highly recommended. An excellent read I was disappointed that I had reached the end after nearly 300 pages This book does cover the wide variety of Saul s work, from his street photography to his fashion photography and his paintings Most of the text was interesting and insightful, a nice reflection upon a humble artist.There are only two downsides in my opinion first, I was expecting this book to have art and less text, and second, the section on Saul s paintings written by Carrie Springer came across as very high art and largely mumbo jumbo, something Saul himself seemed averse to Otherwise, it s a very enjoyable read that I devoured in one sitting. I love these photos It s hard to believe that they sat for years in a box undeveloped This guy is in a tiny class of photographers that have made this level of beautiful color photographs The only other photographer in Saul s class is Ernst Haas The selection of photographs is excellent.For those that believe that only B W can produce art, this book will change your mind.The book is very well made with a nice slide on cover The binding is good and I recommend it anyone interested in beautiful, high quality artistic photographs.