Perhaps best-known for her work with Alexey Brodovitch at Harper's Bazaar in the 1940s, 50s and 60s, Lillian Bassman transformed traditional fashion photographs into original works of art by using darkroom techniques that were unique to the medium. In this photograph, Bassman captures a a swan-like Margie Cato in black and white, offering a heightened contrast between the photographed subject and the Emily Wilkins dress she wears. Though the image was originally captured in the late 1940s, Bassman was encouraged to reinterpret it in the 1990s using photo manipulation software, which was relatively novel at the time. In this example, Bassman reworks the image by bleaching and blurring it to further emphasize the connotations of elegance, glamour and mystery that are often associated with fashion photography.
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