The Grand Palais in Paris welcomes its first Helmut Newton retrospective
The Grand Palais in Paris welcomes its first Helmut Newton retrospective. Fashion’s most provocative photographer passed away in 2004. Among his photos on display is that of Cindy Crawford in Monte Carlo.
Newton grew up in an ultra bourgeois society in Berlin during the 1920s, from which he derived two of his strongest childhood memories: that of his nanny, half-undressed, standing in front of his mirror, and that of his mother wearing a satin slip drenched in Chanel No. 5 perfume. Because he was Jewish, Helmut Neustädter, left Nazi Germany at the age of 18. But for the rest of his life, he remained fascinated by this period of decadent creativity. He liked to repeatedly say: « I am attracted by bad taste, it’s much more stimulating than the (cut) so-called good taste, which is just a standardization of the way we see things. »
Starting in 1980, Newton would take a nude photo for every fashion photo he snapped. He named this series Sie kommen ! They’re coming ! The same phrase that the German soldiers cried out in the bunkers of Normandy.
Among Newton’s clients were the world’s glossiest magazines and the biggest fashion houses. He revolutionized the style, but without ever pretending to be an independent artist.
Newton mistreated the models, the actresses, and the designers. (est ce qu’on peut enlever cette phrase?) His work, neither erotic nor pornographic, empowered women, rendering them strong and dominant, like impenetrable fortresses.