Irving Penn, Protractor Face (Jaime Rishar), New York, 1994, print made in 1996 platinum palladium print mounted aluminum. 49.7 x 49.5 cm (19,57 x 19,49 in). © Irving Penn Foundation. Irving Penn, Protractor Face (Jaime Rishar), New York, 1994, print made in 1996 platinum palladium print mounted aluminum. 49.7 x 49.5 cm (19,57 x 19,49 in). © Irving Penn Foundation. - Mit freundlicher Genehmigung von: ropac

Wer: ropac

Was: Ausstellung

Wann: 22.06.2024 - 12.07.2024

Wo: Paris, Frankreich

Thaddaeus Ropac and Pace Gallery present a collaborative exhibition featuring 14 photographs by Irving Penn, showcasing both his iconic and lesser-known beauty images. Curated by Tom Pecheux, the Global Beauty Director for YSL Beauty, this exhibition coincides with Paris Fashion Week – Menswear, and will celebrate Penn’s enduring influence on the history of photography.

Renowned for the elegance and aesthetic simplicity of his style across fashion imagery, portraiture and experimental personal work, Irving Penn produced beauty photographs that are distinctive for their understated humour and technical concision. These photographs – many made for Vogue during his 65-year tenure there – illustrate concepts loosely related to the cosmetics featured in the magazine, often employing the same formal qualities established by Surrealism to hybridise editorial imagery with fine art.

Bee on Lips (1995), included in the presentation, is an extreme close-up of a bee crawling across a vividly rouged mouth. Emblematic of Penn’s use of visual puns, it refers to the expression ‘bee-stung lips’, used to refer to the fashion for plumped lips. In Mascara Wars (2001), a bloodshot eye starkly…

Thaddaeus Ropac and Pace Gallery present a collaborative exhibition featuring 14 photographs by Irving Penn, showcasing both his iconic and lesser-known beauty images. Curated by Tom Pecheux, the Global Beauty Director for YSL Beauty, this exhibition coincides with Paris Fashion Week – Menswear, and will celebrate Penn’s enduring influence on the history of photography.

Renowned for the elegance and aesthetic simplicity of his style across fashion imagery, portraiture and experimental personal work, Irving Penn produced beauty photographs that are distinctive for their understated humour and technical concision. These photographs – many made for Vogue during his 65-year tenure there – illustrate concepts loosely related to the cosmetics featured in the magazine, often employing the same formal qualities established by Surrealism to hybridise editorial imagery with fine art.

Bee on Lips (1995), included in the presentation, is an extreme close-up of a bee crawling across a vividly rouged mouth. Emblematic of Penn’s use of visual puns, it refers to the expression ‘bee-stung lips’, used to refer to the fashion for plumped lips. In Mascara Wars (2001), a bloodshot eye starkly contrasts with the model’s powdered snow-white face, with two mascara wands poised at the base and tip of her eyelashes, suggesting a pause in the action. While Penn is known for his extraordinary ability to capture beauty, his works simultaneously render a latent darkness. Juxtaposed with the inexorability of decay, his works endure precisely because they compel viewers to return again and again in an attempt to comprehend their hidden meaning, drawing parallels with artists such as Man Ray.

Penn’s photographs are consistently characterised by their formal beauty. His sparse compositions and juxtaposition of sharp line with soft flesh create images that are visually arresting, even – or especially – when they verge on the grotesque or painful. In his beauty photographs, it is the unexpected that engages the viewer, prompting Alexander Liberman, editor of Vogue from 1943, to call them ‘stoppers’ – images that make time stand still amid the magazine’s pages.

About the artistBorn in 1917 to immigrant parents in Plainfield, New Jersey, Penn attended the Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Arts from 1934-38 and studied with Alexey Brodovitch in his Design Laboratory. His first photographic cover for Vogue magazine appeared in October 1943 and he would continue to work at the magazine throughout his career. In the 1950s, he founded his own studio in New York and began taking advertising photographs alongside his private, experimental work, including the Nudes series. In the early 1970s, Penn closed his Manhattan studio and immersed himself in platinum printing in the laboratory he had constructed on the family farm on Long Island. There he created his groundbreaking Cigarettes series, which was shown in his first exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1975, as well as his Street Material series, shown at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York in 1977.

The first retrospective of Penn's work was organised by The Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1984 and toured internationally to countries including Japan, France, Spain, Germany, Sweden, Israel, Italy and the UK. He donated his archives to the Art Institute of Chicago in 1995, and established the Irving Penn Foundation in 2005 to promote knowledge and understanding of his artistic legacy, including the diversity of techniques, mediums and subject matter that he explored.

Recent exhibitions of the artist's work include Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C. (2015), Irving Penn: Underfoot at the Tate Modern, London (2019-20); Irving Penn, Chefs d'œuvre de la collection de la MEP, Les Franciscaines, Deauville, France (2023); Irving Penn: Centennial at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2017), which travelled to the RMN - Grand Palais, Paris (2017); C/O Berlin (2018); the Instituto Moreira Salles, São Paulo (2018); and the De Young Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, USA (2024).

Tags: Farbfotografie, Irving Penn, Schwarzweißfotografie‎

PARIS MARAISVERNISSAGESAMEDI 27 JUIN 2020, 15H – 19H
L'EXPOSITION SERA OUVERTE DURANT PARIS GALLERY WEEKEND (2 – 5 JUILLET)

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