While fashion designers are tasked with creating novel styles for each season, fashion photographers have the challenge of making those pieces irresistibly compelling to their audience. Adding allure to accessories and transforming the potentially mundane into the must-have wardrobe, the exceptional photographers in this genre both documented and displayed the best the fashion world had to offer and, in doing so, elevated their frames to the level of fine art. These masters take center stage in the exhibition, “Icons of Style: A Century of Fashion Photography, 1911-2011,” on view at the Getty Center through 21 October 2018.
This exhibition charts the course of fashion photography for the past one hundred years from the early images taken by Edward Steichen to the provocative poses of contemporary model Kate Moss. It culminates in an examination of the rise of digital photography and its impact on a field that must balance the compelling nature of consumerism with the allure of aesthetically captivating images. Those wanting to gain a grounding in the realm of early twentieth-century fashion photography should invest in 1920 Jazz Age: Fashion & Photographs, an exceptionally well-illustrated account of the decadence of the Jazz Age and the ways in which fashion and design responded accordingly. Preview and buy your copy here.