Irving Penn

American Photographer | Born: 1917 - Died: 2009

Irving Penn was born on June 16, 1917 in Plainfield, New Jersey, to Harry Penn and Sonia Greenberg. In 1922, Irving Penn's younger brother, Arthur Penn, was born, who would go on to become a film director and producer.

Irving Penn attended the Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Art (now the University of the Arts) from 1934 to 1938, where he studied drawing, painting, graphics, and industrial arts under Alexey Brodovitch. While still a student, Penn worked under Brodovitch at Harper's Bazaar, where several of Penn's drawings were published.

Irving Penn worked for two years as a freelance designer and making his first amateur photographs before taking Brodovitch's position as the art director at Saks Fifth Avenue in 1940. Penn remained at Saks Fifth Avenue for a year before leaving to spend a year painting and taking photographs in Mexico and across the US.

When Irving Penn returned to New York, Alexander Liberman offered him a position as an associate in the Vogue magazine Art Department, where Penn worked on layout before Liberman asked him to try his hand at photography for the magazine. Irving Penn photographed his first cover for Vogue magazine in 1943 and continued to work at the magazine throughout his career, shooting covers, portraits, still lifes, fashion, and photographic essays.

In the 1950s, Penn founded his own studio in New York and began making advertising photographs. Over the years, Penn's list of clients grew to include General Foods, De Beers, Issey Miyake, and Clinique.

Irving Penn met fashion model Lisa Fonssagrives at a photo shoot in 1947. In 1950, the two married at Chelsea Register Office, and two years later Lisa gave birth to their son, Tom Penn, who would go on to become a metal designer. Lisa Fonssagrives died in 1992.

Irving Penn died aged 92 on October 7, 2009 at his home in Manhattan.

Source: Wikipedia

Centennial
Author: Maria Morris Hambourg, Jeff L. Rosenheim
Publisher: Metropolitan Museum of Art
Year: 2017 - Pages: 372
Irving Penn (1917–2009) was among the most esteemed and influential photographers of the 20th century. Over the course of a nearly seventy-year career, he mastered a pared-down aesthetic of studio photography that is distinguished for its meticulous attention to composition, nuance, and detail. This indispensable book features one of the largest selections of Penn’s photographs ever compiled, including famous and beloved images as well as works that have never been published. Celebrating the centennial of Penn’s birth, this lavish volume spans the entirety of his groundbreaking career. An enlightening introduction situates his work in the context of the various artistic, social, and political environments and events that affected the content of his photographs. Lively essays acquaint readers with Penn’s primary subjects and campaigns, including early documentary scenes and imagery; portraits; fashion; female nudes; peoples of Peru, Dahomey (Benin), New Guinea, and Morocco; still lifes; and much more. Irving Penn: Centennial is essential for any fan of this artist’s work or the history of 20th-century photography.
 
A Career in Photography
Author: Irving Penn, Colin Westerbeck
Publisher: Bulfinch
Year: 1998 - Pages: 192
Irving Penn’s photographs have become iconic documents of an era––from his fashion and commercial editorials to his series of nudes and portraits of artists, musicians, writers, celebrities, and tribesmen of New Guinea, Peru, and Morocco. Originally published in 1997 to accompany an exhibition celebrating the Irving Penn Collection and Archives at the Art Institute of Chicago, this book examines Penn’s remarkable and wide-ranging career and his uncompromising artistic vision. With nearly 200 captivating photographs that span the entire scope of his artistic production––including poetic portraits of Cecil Beaton, Marcel Duchamp, Arshile Gorky, Elsa Schiaparelli, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Truman Capote––the book features essays by distinguished scholars and reflections by individuals who have known him well or collaborated with him. They also discuss Penn's particular genius for demonstrating how a profound and humane art can be created at the center of a society increasingly dominated by and enthralled with mass media.
 
David Bailey: SUMO
 
 

More Great Photographers To Discover

Thomas Michael Alleman
Nationality: American
Thomas Michael Alleman was born and raised in Detroit, where his father was a traveling salesman and his mother was a ceramic artist. He graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in English Literature. During a fifteen-year newspaper career, Tom was a frequent winner of distinctions from the National Press Photographer’s Association, as well as being named California Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 1995 and Los Angeles Newspaper Photographer of the Year in (…)
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
Thomas Michael Alleman
 
Claire Droppert
Nationality: Dutch

"My name is Claire Droppert, 35 yrs. A freelance photographer/graphic designer based in Rotterdam. In my work, I'm inspired by combinations of simplicity and minimalism, special places, and new editing techniques. My activities: digital art, digital imaging, digital photography, graphic design and photo manipulation."

About Dutch Mountains series: The Netherlands is an extreme flat country where mountains barely exist. Why not have descent mountains (…)
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
Claire Droppert
 
Roger Grasas
Nationality: Spanish
Born: 1970
Roger Grasas (Barcelona, 1970) begins his professional career as a photographer in 1998 documenting cooperation projects for national and international foundations and NGOs as well as for UNESCO. Since then, traveling becomes the core of his artistic work, translating his experiences and reflections into visual arts.

Between 2005 and 2009 he is the director of the BisouFoto communication studio and co-founder of the phototroupe Studio agency. In both projects (…)
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
Roger Grasas
 
Rebecca Gaal
Nationality: American
Born: 1985
Rebecca Gaal is a humanitarian and conservation photographer, painter, illustrator, writer and student of International Public Health studies. She is devoted to examining healthcare issues, environmental concerns and the relationships between the two. Her work has taken her across the globe where she has been witness to the full spectrum of humanity. Gaal’s passion is long term, in-depth projects where she can watch the progression or degradation between man, medicine, (…)
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
Rebecca Gaal
 
Jon Tonks
Nationality: British
Born: 1981

Jon Tonks is a British photographer based in Bath, UK.

Born in the West Midlands in 1981, Jon Tonks studied product design before becoming a staff photographer for a local newspaper. He moved to London and undertook a Master's degre in Photojournalism & Documentary Photography at London College of Communication. and it was during his studies that he undertook a trip to Ascension Island, which would be the starting point for the Empire project.

(…)
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
Jon Tonks
 
Maxine Helfman
Nationality: American
Born: 1953
A self-taught, late bloomer, after spending years as a stylist and art director, the only way to truly realize her vision was to get behind the camera. She has since been shooting commercially for advertising and editorial clients while pursuing personal projects. Her work has been recognized by PX3, IPA, Foto Dc, Flash Forward Boston, Critical Mass, British Journal of Photography, Photo News as well as the permanent collection of Santa Barbara Museum of Art and Museum of (…)
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
Maxine Helfman
 
Philip Jones Griffiths
Nationality: Welsh
Born: 1936 - Died: 2008

From www.magnumphotos.com
Born in Rhuddlan, Wales, Philip Jones Griffiths studied pharmacy in Liverpool and worked in London while photographing part-time for the Manchester Guardian. In 1961 he became a full-time freelancer for the London-based Observer. He covered the Algerian War in 1962, then moved to Central Africa. From there he (…)
 
Gregory Crewdson
Nationality: American
Born: 1962

Gregory Crewdson (born September 26, 1962) is an American photographer who is best known for elaborately staged scenes of American homes and neighborhoods. Crewdson was born in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. He attended John Dewey High School, graduating early. As a teenager, he was part of a punk rock group called The Speedies that hit the New York scene in selling out shows all over town. Their hit song "Let Me Take Your Photo" proved to be prophetic to (…)
 
Anton Gorlin
Nationality: Australian
Anton Gorlin is a landscape and a real estate photographer, who tries to capture the essence of the moment and beauty of shapes and forms.
Originally from Ukraine, he now lives and works in Sydney, Australia. Anton enjoys the beauty of Australian nature and does several trips a year to keep his portfolio growing. Prints of his photos landed in Ukraine, Russia, Germany, Australia, USA and other countries. Anton's works have been published in various magazines and (…)
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
Anton Gorlin
 
Liu Bolin
Nationality: Chinese
Born: 1973

Liu Bolin is an artist born in China’s Shandong province in 1973, and he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Shandong College of Arts in 1995 and his Master of Fine Arts from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing in 2001. His work has been exhibited in museums around the world. Also known as "The Invisible Man", Liu Bolin's most popular works are from his "Hiding in the City" series; photographic works that began as performance art in 2005. Liu belongs to (…)
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
Liu Bolin
 
David Bailey: SUMO
 
Join our newsletter
Be up-to-date with call for entries, deadlines and other news about exhibitions, galleries, publications, & special events
 
NEW! All About Photo Awards 2019 Magazine
All About Photo Awards 2019
 
 
 
The Jules Maeght Gallery is a contemporary art gallery who seeks to engage the San Francisco community by infusing European artists, young and established alike, into a diverse, multimedia dialogue.
 
TAKES U TO THE NEXT LEVEL
 
Since 2005, your guide through contemporary art from a French perspective to let you make exciting choices