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TRIM Magazine August 24 2012 – Irving Penn (556)

stacy thomas - writing with focus

http://trim-mag.com/inspirations-irving-penn/

Irving Penn was an American photographer, born in 1917, whose elegant, singular style shaped the direction of fashion photography in the mid-twentieth century. Placing them before plain, flat backgrounds as no one had before, Penn viewed his subjects from an almost anthropological standpoint. While he is best known for his fashion photography, he was an artist first, and his subjects over the years ranged from iconic celebrities such as Pablo Picasso and Jean Cocteau, to eccentric still life, to fleshy nudes, to ethnographic portraiture. Throughout his expansive career spanning six decades, his pictures maintained a standard of quality that placed him consistently in the upper reaches of his field. 

Penn’s biography reads like a catalogue—there are no tales of excess or indulgence which typify the high society artist of the time. His story is one of work—which he did prolifically. After spending a year painting in Mexico in 1942…

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