Mar 13, 2019 | By Alexei Cowan
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Somerset House is currently staging the largest exhibition to date of the works of renowned fashion photographer Guy Bourdin, featuring over 100 pieces and previously unseen material. Bourdin’s editorial and advertising imagery was particularly well known within the pages of Vogue Paris from the ’50s-’70s, whereby he was able to turn simple product shots on their head into artful, carefully choreographed pieces. Inspired by surrealism, film noir and post-war advertising amongst other things, Bourdin was cited as Man Ray’s protégée, but went on to himself inspire a number of contemporary photographers including Tim Walker and Nick Knight.
Spread over a number of rooms within the great embankment galleries, the mezzanine showcases a number of Bourdin’s editorials for Vogue Paris hung in groups of four, as well as shots from his Charles Jourdan advertising campaigns including the iconic ‘Walking Legs’, 1979. Notes and drawings are also placed in the central cabinets depicting the photographer’s process behind creating a shot. Other parts of the exhibition include a projection room displaying his fashion films, a room dedicated to his black and white photography, another containing his paintings and sketches, and a room full of his polaroids, amongst others. Undoubtedly a major fashion exhibition for the end of the year and onwards, this display of the noted photographer’s work is bound to inspire fashion and beauty editorials, womenswear and intimates. –Emily Cater
The Strand WC2R 1LA / 44 (0)20 7845 4600
On view through March 15, 2015
Images courtesy of Somerset House
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