Bert Stern, Dies at 83

- - Blog News

Along with Irving Penn, Richard Avedon and Mark Shaw, Mr. Stern was part of a generation of photographers who made clear, clutter-free, arresting images the language of glossy magazine advertising, which until then had mainly used pictures to illustrate text.

…Robert Sobieszek, the curator of what is now the International Museum of Photography and Film at the George Eastman House, called Mr. Stern’s martini photograph “the most influential break with traditional advertising photography” of its time.

via NYTimes.com.

There Are 2 Comments On This Article.

  1. Ellis Vener

    I never met Stern but he – along with Jay Maisel, Eric Meola, Arthur Meyerson, Stanley Kubrick, Annie Leibovitz, and Nestor Alemendros- is one of the people who helped me find my life’s calling. A Bert Stern photograph could be witty, , provocative graphic, and thought provoking – often all of those things at once even in his advertising work.

    Stern’s images were also sexy. By “sexy” I do not mean the fake, staged, ironically distanced, and above all the objectifying near and full on pornographic imagery that usually passes for “sexy”. I mean they were full of a real genuine passion, clearly full of his desire and affection for the women he photographed. When he photographed men he was likewise engaged but in a very different way.

    I discovered Stern in a copy of “American Photographer” in the late 1970s well after he’d crashed and was just beginning a comeback. Mentioning just one of his photos (the martini in the pyramid) during my interview to get into the University of Texas famed photo-journalism program got me redirected into taking photo-illustration classes with advertising photographer Bob Salomon (sp?) in UT’s Fine Art department and kept me out of UT’s program

    Here are some samples of Stern’s work

    http://life.time.com/culture/bert-stern-photographer-playful-celebrity-portraits-from-the-1960s/#11

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HprGAG0ELV8

    http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2013/04/photos-bert-stern-scrapbook-marilyn-monroe_slideshow_item0_1

    The pyramid in the martini glass: http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/photographs/bert-stern-smirnoff-great-pyramid-of-giza-4952874-details.aspx

    http://suicideblonde.tumblr.com/post/12665738558/sue-lyon-as-stanley-kubricks

    There are a many great photographers but very few photographers about whom it can honestly be written that they changed the way we all see the world. Bert Stern was one of them.