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William Klein (American, b.1928)
LOT ID: 77064
Picnic, Rome , 1956

Silver Print, gelatin silver print
11.5 х 17.25 in. (29.21 x 43.82 cm.)
Signed, on verso.
Lot description
Image size is 11.5 x 17.25 inches (29.2 x 43.8 cm); paper size is 16 x 20 inches (40.6 x 50.8 cm). Printed in 1986.

American artist, film‐maker, and experimental photographer. Originally a painter, Klein's approach to photography was always irreverent, more to do with the possible outcomes of photographic media and processes than the creation of pictures. His intense volume of New York images, Life is Good and Good for You in New York: trance Witness Revels (1957), made in an eight‐month period in 1954–5, assaulted the conventions of photography best embodied in the visually pristine work of Henri Cartier‐Bresson. Klein developed a personal anti‐aesthetic of blurring, distortion, and graininess that reflected his own experience of the city and gave impetus to the emerging genre of street photography. At the same time he embarked on the book project, he began shooting glamorous yet innovative pictures for Vogue and other publications, expanding the limits of acceptability in fashion photography. Although well received in Europe, Life is Good was reviled in America as the work of a hack. Klein, however, went on to produce three more books, on Rome, Moscow, and Tokyo, and to be recognized as one of the 20th century's most influential photographers.[]
Picnic, Rome by William Klein
  • Picnic, Rome by William Klein
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