Legendary Street Photographers – William Klein

William Klein is a legendary American Fashion and Street Photographer based in Paris who is regarded amongst the great pioneers of genre of the Street Photography.

Renowned for his framing and exceptional compositions, his empathy with his subjects, and his up-close approach to photographing subjects on the street, Klein’s career has spanned throughout the ’50s to the present day, including stints as a Vogue fashion photographer. His extraordinary signature fashion work often incorporated his models amongst busy and sometimes chaotic street scenes that included locational shoots in New York, Paris and Rome.

Kleins’ provocative approach and his exceptional natural rapport with his models lead to the creation of iconic images that challenged the conventional boundaries of photography at the time and introduced new techniques into the field including the use of telephoto lenses to capture his subjects from a distance so as to create a more free and ‘anonymous’ effect in his style of composition.

In October 2012, The Tate Modern presented an important retrospective dedicated to both William Klein and Daido Moriyama that featured Klein’s re-interpretations of his own work in the form of hand-painted overlays of some of his iconic contact sheet images that were scaled-up to large and very striking wall-mounted images.

The film below captures Klein’s charming and fiercely iconoclastic personality at interview with a fellow legend in the form of documentary film maker Alan Yentob, known for his groundbreaking early BBC portrait of David Bowie entitled Cracked Actor.

The Many Lives of William Klein – Alan Yentob

Marcus D. Niski, July 2021

Here Stood Mayakovsky — Travel Between The Pages

The Brooklyn Bridge literally loomed large in my Brooklyn family’s history for a century, so I was intrigued when I stumbled upon this impressive limited edition volume. The accordion-fold book Brooklyn Bridge with a poem by the 20th century Russian poet Vladimir Mayakovsky  and original woodcuts by Canadian printer and book designer Glenn Goluska . The award-winning […]

Here Stood Mayakovsky — Travel Between The Pages

The stars, bars, bubbles, and petals of Manhattan manhole covers — Ephemeral New York

Underfoot all over New York City are late 19th and early 20th century manhole covers embossed with unusual shapes and designs. There’s a practical purpose for this: raised detailing helped prevent people from slipping (and horses from skidding) as they traversed Gotham’s streets in wet weather. They’re also a form of branding. The city’s many […]

The stars, bars, bubbles, and petals of Manhattan manhole covers — Ephemeral New York