Saul Leiter’s “In My Room,” which features Leiter’s intimate photographs of his muses, enters its final week at Howard Greenberg Gallery. The show runs through August 30, 2018.
On display are 35 photographs that are on view for the first time. These images were taken by the American photographer over a course of three decades.
“Deeply personal and contemplative, many of the images in ‘Saul Leiter: In My Room’ share tender moments underscored by the subjects’ trust in the photographer. The exhibition, which includes work from the mid-1940s through the early 1960s, will be the subject of an upcoming book, also titled ‘In My Room,’ to be published by Steidl/Howard Greenberg Library,” the gallery says.
“In My Room” looks at Leiter’s world and the women in his life through his study of the feminine form. Recent discoveries from the photographer’s archive, these black-and-white works depict images bathed in natural light of Leiter’s studio in New York City’s East Village. In the process uncover the empathetic and mutual collaboration that exists between an artist and his subjects. Leiter had planned to release a book of his nudes in the 1970s but that never came to fruition during his lifetime. “The exhibition and the book offer a first-time look at this body of work, which Leiter began on his arrival in New York in 1946 and continued throughout the next two decades. Leiter, who was also a painter, incorporates abstract elements into these photographs and often shows the influence of his favorite artists, including Bonnard, Vuillard, and Matisse,” the gallery adds.
The artist took pictures and painted until his demise and worked well into his 80s but in relative obscurity. “Leiter preferred solitude in life, and resisted any type of explanation or analysis of his work. With “In My Room,” he ushers viewers into his private world while retaining his strong sense of mystery,” the gallery writes.
He made a significant contribution to the medium of photography in the 1940s and 1950s. According to the gallery, “his abstracted forms and radically innovative compositions have a painterly quality that stands out among the work of his New York School contemporaries.”
Saul Leiter (1923-2013) was an American photographer. The artist moved to New York in 1946 to pursue paintings. His growing interest in photography was inspired by the Abstract Expressionist painter Richard Pousette-Dart who at that time was experimenting with the genre himself. Exhibition such as that of Henri Cartier-Bresson at the Museum of Modern Art in 1947 also drew him to photography. His black-and-white photographs were featured in the exhibition “Always the Young Strangers” at the Museum of Modern Art in 1953. Henry Wolf published Leiter’s color fashion work in Esquire and later in Harper’s Bazaar in the 1950s. For the next 20 years, he continued to work as a fashion photographer for Show, Elle, British Vogue, Queen, and Nova. Faced with financial difficulties, the artist had to close his Fifth Avenue commercial studio in the early 1980s. For the next two decades, Leiter worked in obscurity. It was in 2006, with the help of writer/curator Martin Harrison and Howard Greenberg Gallery, the groundbreaking monograph “Saul Leiter: Early Color” was published by Steidl in Germany. It helped cement Leiter’s position as an early pioneer in the history of color photography. The first US museum show of the artist’s photographs was held in Milwaukee Art Museum in 2006.
The exhibition runs through August 30, 2018, at Howard Greenberg Gallery, The Fuller Building, 41 East 57th Street, Suite 1406, New York, NY 10022.
For details, visit: http://www.blouinartinfo.com/galleryguide/howard-greenberg-gallery/overview
Click on the slideshow for a sneak peek at the exhibition.
Founder: Louise Blouin