"I am interested in what motivates people, what they do with their lives. I would have made a good psychiatrist." Arnold Newman
A person’s entire life represented by a single instant. The photographic portrait as a form of visual biography. With great sensitivity and care, Arnold Newman brought these aspects so strongly into the foreground that they became symbols and clues to the person’s character. With their powerful metaphoric quality, his photographs represent a cross-section of twentieth century culture. Arnold Newman photographed numerous famous people in his empathetic visual language—Max Ernst, Piet Mondrian, Marcel Duchamp, Konrad Adenauer, John F. Kennedy, Andy Warhol, David Hockney, Martha Graham— but hated the idea of celebrity when it was devoid of achievement. His portraits represent a search for exceptional individuals who were realizing their own ideas with exceptional ability. He was interested in what, not who, people were.
Newman loved teaching, as many of his students attest. "Masterclass" shows that there are still many lessons to be learned from this master. The exhibition comprises 200 vintage black-and-white Photographs from the oeuvre of the most influential portrait photographer of the twentieth century. The retrospective has been curated by the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography, Minneapolis, by William Ewing, in Collaboration with the Harry Ransom Center, Austin, Texas. A catalog has been published by Thames & Hudson to accompany the exhibition.