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Nov 01 - Dec 21

Gagosian Gallery, 456 North Camden Drive, Beverly Hills, California, CA 90210, USA
  • Cheryl Crane, daughter of Lana Turner, Hollywood, California, September 30, 1963, 1964. Gelatin silver print, 20 x 16 inches (50.8 x 61 cm) Ed. of 7 © The Richard Avedon Foundation

  • Penelope Tree, evening dress by Lanvin, Paris, January 1968, 1981.
    Gelatin silver print, 24 x 20 inches (61 x 50.8 cm) Ed. of 50
    © The Richard Avedon Foundation

  • “AVEDON: Women”, Installation view. © The Richard Avedon Foundation. Photo by Douglas M. Parker Studio


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Richard Avedon’s women at Gagosian Bevery Hills

Gagosian Beverly Hills recently inaugurated an exhibition covering Richard Avedon´s 60 years in photography, under the title “Avedon: Women”. New York-born Avedon is for many the supreme fashion photographer, a genius that was always able to reflect through his work the times he was living in. He knew like no one else how to capture the essence of the women he was portraying, despite him saying that he was only reading the surface rather than going below anything. From the almost perfect beauty of supermodels and celebrities of the likes of Brigitte Bardot or Twiggy to the strange allure of the anonymous female subjects, all occupy a prominent place in his distinctive imagery. Such was his passion for depicting the female figure that it comes as no surprise that his interest in photography was triggered by observing the women in his own family. “Avedon was always looking for another way to show how women felt and thought. He always seemed to be slightly ahead of his time in terms of whatever the social or cultural thinking was, always pushing the envelope and sometimes even getting himself into trouble. He was one of the first photographers to insist in the use of colored women in fashion editorials” says Carol Squiers, curator at the International Center of Photography in New York.

“Avedon: Women” is the first solo exhibition of Avedon’s work in Los Angeles since 1976. As Gagosian gallery points out, it features more than 100 silver gelatin photographs, ranging from oversized exhibition prints dating from the artist’s 1978 showing at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, to more intimately scaled photographs that he printed and editioned throughout his lifetime. Approximately 300 contact prints, drawn from the Avedon Foundation’s extensive archive of sittings, reveal the wide range of subjects that Avedon photographed: musician Ella Fitzgerald, Avedon’s adored sister, Louise, and the young actress Elizabeth Taylor, among others. The exhibition is centered in the striking visual connections that lie beyond chronology or subject matter. “It’s interesting how he was able to capture personalities,” Kara Vander Weg, one of the directors at the Gagosian Gallery in New York, told recently to LA times. “And he seemed to know when he got the image he wanted without seeing it on a viewfinder, which is hard to imagine today.” Gagosian’s retrospective demonstrates that Avedon’s legacy still remains relevant and that his portraits still possess the striking beauty that originally made them famous.