Known as the pioneer of “environmental portraiture,” renowned photographer Arnold Newman, who died in June, was not fond of the title. “Forget about labeling me as one thing or another,” Newman said in an interview with PDN Gallery and Kodak Professional’s Legends Online Series. “I’m interested in what motivates individuals, what they do with their lives, their personalities, and how I perceive and interpret them. But of equal or greater importance is that, even if the person is not known (or already forgotten), the photograph itself should excite the viewer.”
Newman photographed every United States president from Harry Truman to Bill Clinton, as well as such renowned figures as writer Arthur Miller, artist Marc Chagall, musician Leonard Bernstein, actor Zero Mostel, and Israeli leaders David Ben-Gurion, Moshe Dayan and Golda Meir. Placing people in carefully chosen settings and environments, Newman created intimate, often startling portraits that capture the essence of his subjects’ personalities and work.
One World, One People is an exhibition featuring some 53 portraits. Originally organized by the Jewish Museum of Florida (where it was shown in 2003), the traveling exhibit is currently on display at the Art Association of Jackson Hole in Jackson, Wyo. Following its run in Jackson, One World, One People will move to the Oregon Jewish Museum in Portland, Ore., where it is scheduled to open September 17.
Throughout the course of his career, which spanned more than 60 years, Newman’s works appeared in such publications as Life, Vanity Fair, Harper’s Bazaar and The New Yorker. His photographs are featured in the collections of museums around the world, including New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, London’s Victoria and Albert Museum and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.
*Art Association of Jackson Hole, 240 S. Glenwood, Jackson, Wyo.; through Aug. 25; Mon.-Fri.; 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. or by appointment; free. (307-733-6379 or www.artassociation.org) *