Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Get Back!




Sometimes themes just present themselves. A bevy of backs began with an e-mail from the photographer David Schoerner informing me he had recently started working on a series of photographs inspired by the 1988 painting "Betty" by Gerhard Richter. (That's Schoerner above and Richter below.) Then the next thing you know back views are popping up everywhere!





This from Stuart O'Sullivan:





A trio of fashionable backs from The Sartorialist:










A pair of images showing what it takes to work at French Vogue from Tommy Ton of Jak and Jil:







These from Casia Bromberg, an interesting photographer from Sweden:








And lastly, if just the back of a head can count, this old favorite "Lloyd's Head", 1944, by Barbara Morgan:




14 comments:

The Concrete Commentator said...

I love photographs of backs...there is always a sense of mystery to it! Not revealing all makes the viewer more curious I think.

Alice Olive said...

Wow, the first photo is absolutely beautiful. So delicate. Love it.

lookinaroundbob said...

I was almost a back specialist
http://lookpic.blogspot.com/

Joanna Goddard said...

love.

namasphos said...

I find that the photographs of backs within a specific context are most successful. Casia Bromberg shows the back when the front is not able-- such as when lying face-down or being held by another. However, The Sartorialist's photo of two matching girls with two matching backs is compelling in formal terms.

gabriela said...

At the Klompching Gallery in Dumba the current exhibit runs with the same theme: http://www.klompching.com/kcg/exhibitview1.htm

James said...

In relation to this theme, you should see the film a one and a two (or yi yi in its original chinese). In it there is a young photographer who takes photos only of the backs of people's heads. He does it so he can show them what they look like from behind!

stefan abrams said...

Of course the richter painting started with a photo

Paul Pincus said...

i love this ... mr. schoerner's image is beautiful!

i think it's remarkable how many artists have been compelled to pay homage to ... and influenced and moved by ... gerhard richter's betty! brilliant post!!!

Strath said...

I love collections of photography with a theme – this reminds me of the collection MoMA had up for awhile of photographs in which the photographer's shadow appears:
http://pacific-standard.blogspot.com/2008/06/shadow-knows.html

sean said...

You should perhaps check out the work of Danish Painter Vilhelm Hammershoi for perhaps the modern inspiration behind the back view.

...love Maegan said...

this post is fabulous all the way around.

{my mother used to take photos of the back of my hair when I was a kid ...as well as my brother's "perfectly round head" as she dubbed it}

indigo16 said...

A great story, I also love an image by Leon Steele, winner of the 2000 Kobal award called Brendans Back. It is such a sensitive portrait and at the time caused a substantial debate about what actualy constitutes a Portrait, but I love it.
(you can see it here http://www.johnkobal.org/image_popup.php?image=portrait_award/2000b)

far out brussel sprout said...

you are so observant! I've seen most of these images lately and never noticed the connection. Love it.