The Helmut Newton Foundation in Berlin will for the first time ever be exhibiting the works of revolutionary fashion photographers Guy Bourdin and Helmut Newton.
They were the two most influential image makers of the ’70s, and their work continues to echo through culture decades later.
Guy and Helmut both worked for Vogue Paris and took photos for a number of big brands. Guy captured images for companies including Bloomingdale’s and Versace, while Helmut’s clients included world-famous fashion companies Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent.
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Both of them did incredible work, but it turns out there was considerable competition between them about who could push their vision further.
Guy and I shared an agent in the early ’80s and I was privy to some of the backstage drama of his work: He was difficult with a capital D, but brilliant. Helmut was a charming man, whose boundary-pushing work – in his mind – was all about making women powerful. There was considerable controversy about that, but his legacy speaks for itself.
Guy Bourdin and Helmut Newton photographs showcased at the Helmut Newton Foundation
It’s exciting news that the Helmut Newton Foundation will be exhibiting Guy’s and Helmut’s works, ensuring their legacies endure. Guy’s work will be displayed in an exhibition called “Image Maker,” which includes some of his lesser-known images and photographs from various publications. Helmut’s will be displayed in an exhibition entitled “A Gun for Hire,” which includes a selection of his commissioned work.
Helmut’s work was previously showcased in an exhibition with that same title back in 2005 in Monaco and Berlin, two years after his death.
In October 2003, just a few months before he died, Helmut established the Helmut Newton Foundation, dedicated to the preservation and presentation of his and his wife’s photographic works, according to the foundation’s website. Helmut wanted the foundation to be a “living institution,” so each exhibition features a selection of his work alongside that of the “very best photographers of our time,” the foundation’s website states.
Other photographers whose works have been featured at the Helmut Newton Foundation include David Lachapelle, James Nachtwey, Larry Clark and Ralph Gibson.