Irving Penn – Small Trades

09.10.2010 – 23.01.2011

For more than 60 years, Irving Penn has left his mark on the world of photography through his images of fashion, still lifes and portraits. The Musée de l'Elysée pays tribute to this 20th century master of photography. Fashion photographer for Vogue, Penn photographed small trades at the beginning of the 1950s. This personal project was based on his admiration for the working classes. Recruited in the streets of Paris, London and New York, the models came to Penn's studio in their work clothes. Salesmen, newsagents, rag and bone men, chimney sweeps, all posed in the neutral territory of the studio of the New York photographer who was convinced that many of these activities would disappear. The exhibition is organised by the John Paul Getty Museum of Los Angeles, which in 2008 acquired the most complete collection of this series.
The catalogue
The catalogue of the exhibition, published by the John Paul Getty Museum, brings together their collection of the Small Trades series as well as an interview with Edmonde-Charles Roux, the editor in chief of Vogue who assisted Penn when he undertook this project in Paris. The publication unveils to the public for the first time this extraordinary collection of portraits produced between 1950 and 1951.
Irving Penn, Small Trades
Text by Virginia A. Heckert and Anne Lacoste, associate curator and assistant curator of the photography department of the John Paul Getty Museum.
Published by the John Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles (2009)
272 pages, 259 illustrations. English Edition