Mary Jane Russell, Le Pavillion, New York. Harpers Bazaar, 1950
Silver gelatin print
24 x 20 inches (61 x 50.8 cm.)
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Lillian Bassman is a New York fashion photographer mainly known for her black and white photographs, taken between 1950 and 1965. Her high-contrast, almost painterly, images of actresses and models emanated an inherent elegance and mysticism. Bassman’s photographs were mainly published in Harper's Bazaar magazine.
The artist’s photograph of Mary Jane Russell, a successful fashion model of the ‘50s, exhibits the most notable qualities of her photographic work. Bassman’s emblematic contrasts between light and darkness emphasize the model’s graceful silhouette and her stylish outfit. Through the use of darkroom techniques, the artist immersed the image in a dreamy and hazy atmosphere, at the crossroads of a watercolor painting. Her unique combination of romanticism, boldness and sophistication makes Lillian Bassman one of the most renowned photographers in the world of fashion.