Elliott Erwitt (Prices later prints 3000 € - 5500 €)
Elliott Erwitt is one of the most respected photographers of a generation featuring names like Robert Frank, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Willy Ronis and Lee Freelander.
Elliot Erwitt was born in France to Russian parents, but lived his first 10 years in Italy, before his family fled from Mussolini's regime to the USA. While Erwitt completed High School, he worked at a commercial photo lab where he copied signed pictures of celebrities. On his travels he met Edward Steichen, Robert Capa and Roy Stryker, key figures of a photographic generation prior to Erwitt's. In their own ways, all three became fascinated by Erwitt's mode of expression and became his photographic mentors and advisors. In 1953 he was invited by Robert Capa to become a member of Magum Photos, the most important and reputed photo agency of the age. Today he is still an active and influential member and contributes to strengthening the agency's portfolio.
Despite his age, Erwitt continues to produce pictures and is currently working on several book projects. And although he is often described as a street photographer, Erwitt does not like to define himself. "I wouldn't call myself anything. I don't wake up in the morning and think I'm going to be funny or anything like that."
The nearest he comes is the definition of craftsman, someone who works in the "traditional" manner: a Leica, a film and an aspiration to take good pictures that entertain and surprise people. You could say that his pictures show a somewhat rosier version of reality than many of his Magnum colleagues, but his pictures often have an underlying message. He wants to show us a "just-around-the-corner" slice of reality in the form of snapshots. Despite in several interviews having expressed a resistance to pushing a political agenda, Erwitt has taken a number of pictures that have subsequently come to symbolise important political issues or moments. For example his iconic picture of a dark-skinned man drinking from a shabby drinking fountain for ‘colored people', or the picture of a smoking Kennedy full of hope for the future - and three years later a devastated Jacqueline Kennedy beside her late husband's stars-andstripes-covered coffin.
Erwitt makes very little of the fact that he has photographed some of the main public figures of our times, or one of its sex symbols, Marilyn Monroe. He treats a cleaner and a celebrity in much the same way, rather focusing on getting a picture. "It is all there"
Dogs are one of his favourite subjects and he has featured them in a series of pictorial books. "Why not? Dogs are expressive; they are everywhere; they are sympathetic. And they don't ask for prints."
(Ausstellungen / Auswahl)
- Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
- Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., USA
- Art Institute of Chicago, USA
- Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, France
- Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain
- Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA
- New South Wales Museum of Art, Australia
- The Barbican, London, UK
- NRW-Forum Düsseldorf, Germany
- Kunsthaus, Zurich, Switzerland
- Fotofestival Nordic Light Event, Kristiansund, Norway
- in focus gallery, Cologne, Germany
(Bücher / Auswahl)
Erwitt, 2014 "Regarding Women", teNeues Verlag, Kempen
2013 "KOLOR", teNeues Velag Kempen
2010 ''Paris'', teNeues Verlag, Kempen
2009 ''Personal Best'', teNeues Verlag, Kempen
2007 "Unseen", teNeues Verlag, Kempen
2005, Stern Spezial Fotografie Portfolio No. 39
2005 Woof, Chronicle Books LLC, USA
2003 Elliott Erwitt's Handbook, The Quantuck Lane Press/W.W. Norton & Company, USA
2002 Snaps, Phaidon Press Ltd., USA
1999 DogsDogs, Phaidon Press Ltd., USA
1999 Museum Watching, Phaidon Press Ltd., USA
1994 Between the Sexes, W.W. Norton & Company, USA
1991 On the Beach, W.W. Norton & Company, USA
1992 To the Dogs, DAP/Scalo, Zurich
1988 Personal Exposures, W.W. Norton & Company, USA
1988 ''Hundstage''. Ellert und Richter, Hamburg
1974 Son of Bitch, Viking, USA
1972 Photographs and Anti-Photographs, New York Graphic Society, USA