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Irving Penn (American, 1917–2009)
LOT ID: 78222
Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May, 1995

Cibachrome
15.25 х 21 in. (38.74 x 53.34 cm.)
Signed, titled, and dated, with edition number, edition stamp, copyright stamp, and reference number on verso
Edition of 25
Lot description
Image size is 15.25 x 21 inches (38.7 x 53.3 cm). Paper size is 18.5 x 23.5 inches (47 x 59.7 cm).

Printed in 1996 in an edition of 25. This playful image of two models with their wigs on backwards originally appeared as a two-page spread in the July 1995 issue of U.S. Vogue, and exemplifies the streamlined, minimalist compositions and dramatic lighting for which Penn was known.

Photographer Irving Penn (American, 1917–2009) is celebrated for his compelling portraits, scenes, and still lifes, in genres ranging from fashion to travel photography. Born in Plainfield, New Jersey, Penn studied painting and design at the Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Art, working alongside Harper’s Bazaar art director Alexey Brodovitch during his summers as a student. He later worked as a graphic designer in New York before being hired to shoot for Vogue magazine, under influential art director Alexander Liberman. Penn began designing the covers and photographing models for the magazine, establishing his reputation as an influential fashion photographer in images with streamlined, minimalist compositions and dramatic lighting. Penn also created intimate portraits of celebrities, often encouraging his subjects to sit for him for many hours at a time in order to take truly personal, individualized portraits. He traveled to New Guinea, Morocco, Peru, and other countries around the world to capture images of families and workers in elegant, detailed ethnographic photos. In the 1960s, he began working with platinum prints, a laborious, turn of the century method of developing photographs; he later began redeveloping many of his earlier works using the process, bringing the technique back into popularity. Towards the end of his career, Penn’s work expanded to include arresting still lifes, such as closely cropped photographs of cigarette butts and bones. He died in 2009, at 92 years old, leaving behind a legacy of graceful, incisive works, spanning both the commercial and the Fine Art worlds. Penn has been honored with the Hasselblad Award in Photography, and his work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., the Getty Museum in Los Angeles, and the Tate Modern in London.
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Two Hairy Young Women New York, May 1995 by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women New York, May 1995 by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
  • Two Hairy Young Women, New York, May by Irving Penn
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Sales Results for Comparable Works

  • Irving Penn

    Two women in black with bread, Marocco
    platinum print
    (H 19.7, W 19.7) in.
    (50 x 50) cm.
    Ed. ed.21
    Sold for: US$25,432
    Tuesday, November 13, 2012
    Millon & Associés
    Lot 00077
  • Irving Penn

    Red-laquered lid, New York
    cibachrome print
    (H 20.7, W 19.7) in.
    (52.6 x 50) cm.
    Ed. ed. 6
    Sold for: US$22,500
    Tuesday, April 03, 2012
    Sotheby's New York
    Lot 00197
  • Irving Penn

    Miyake seaweed dress, New York
    dye transfer print
    (H 19.5, W 17.7) in.
    (49.5 x 45) cm.
    Ed. ed.21
    Sold for: US$13,744
    Saturday, November 12, 2011
    Christie's Paris
    Lot 00211
  • Irving Penn

    Two New Guinea young women with feathers, New Guinea
    dye transfer print
    (H 19.2, W 18.7) in.
    (48.8 x 47.5) cm.
    Ed. ed.20
    Sold for: US$27,488
    Saturday, November 12, 2011
    Christie's Paris
    Lot 00212
  • Irving Penn

    Hat (Isabella), New York
    selenium toned gelatin silver print
    (H 16.9, W 14.9) in.
    (42.8 x 37.9) cm.
    Ed. ed.11
    Sold for: US$36,009
    Saturday, November 12, 2011
    Christie's Paris
    Lot 00225
  • Irving Penn

    Bee on lips, New York
    dye-transfer print
    (H 16.1, W 22.7) in.
    (40.8 x 57.6) cm.
    Ed. ed.11
    Sold for: US$182,500
    Friday, April 08, 2011
    Christie's New York
    Lot 00573
  • Irving Penn

    Woman in feather hat, New York
    platinum-palladium print, mntd on aluminum
    (H 19.5, W 18.8) in.
    (49.6 x 47.7) cm.
    Ed. 7/7
    Sold for: US$68,500
    Thursday, April 07, 2011
    Christie's New York
    Lot 00056
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