Annie Leibovitz: A Photographic Retrospective

Annie Leibovitz: A Photographic Retrospective

Annie Leibowitz was born in Westbury, Connecticut, one of the six children born to Sam, an Air Force lieutenant, and Marilyn Leibovitz, a modern dance instructor. In 1967, Leibovitz enrolled at the San Francisco Art Institute, where she developed a love for photography. After living briefly on an Israeli kibbutz, in 1970 Leibovitz returned to the United States in and applied for a job with the start-up rock music magazine The Rolling Stone. Impressed with Leibovitz’s portfolio, Editor Jann Wenner offered her a job as a staff photographer. Within two years, the 23-year-old Leibovitz was promoted to Chief Photographer, a position that she held for the next 10 years. Her work with the magazine gave her the opportunity to accompany the Rolling Stones band on their 1975 international tour.  While with The Rolling Stone, Leibovitz developed her trademark technique, which involved the use of bold primary colors and surprising poses.  Wenner has credited her with making many of The Rolling Stone’s covers collector’s items, most notably an issue that featured a nude John Lennon curled around his fully clothed wife, Yoko Ono. Taken on December 8, 1980, Leibovitz’s photo of the former Beatle was shot just hours before his death.

In 1983, Leibovitz left The Rolling Stone and began working for the entertainment magazine Vanity Fair. With a wider array of subjects, Leibovitz’s photographs for Vanity Fair ranged from presidents to literary icons to teen heartthrobs.   A number of Vanity Fair covers have featured Leibovitz’s stunning and often controversial portraits of celebrities. Demi Moore (very pregnant and very nude) and Whoopi Goldberg (half-submerged in a bathtub of milk) are among the most remembered actresses to grace the cover in recent years. Known for her ability to make her sitters become physically involved in her work, one of Leibovitz’s most famous portraits is of the late artist Keith Haring, who painted himself like one of his canvases for the photo.

In 1991, Leibovitz’s collection of over 200 color and black-and-white photographs was exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. Later that year, a book was published to accompany the show, entitled Photographs: Annie Leibovitz 1970-1990. In 1996, Leibovitz was chosen to be the official photographer for the Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.  A compilation of her black-and-white portraits of American athletes, including Carl Lewis and Michael Johnson, was published in the book Olympic Portraits (1991). Widely considered one of America’s best portrait photographers, Leibovitz also published the book Women (1999), which was accompanied by an essay that was written by her companion, the acclaimed late novelist Susan Sontag. With its title subject matter, Leibovitz presented an array of female images from Supreme Court Justices to Las Vegas showgirls, to coal miners and farmers. Currently, many of her original prints are housed in various galleries throughout the United States.

I. Background Music: The Sounds of Philip Glass

Photography by Annie Leibovitz:  Phillip Glass

II. Background Music: Restless Farewell by Bob Dylan

Photography by Annie Leibowitz: Bob Dylan

Annie Leibovitz: A Photographic Retrospective

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Please Share This:

7 Responses to “Annie Leibovitz: A Photographic Retrospective”

  1. Et Cetera: Publick and Privat Curiosities Baryshnikov.: Le Jeune Homme et la Mort « Says:

    […] Mikhail Baryshnikov: Photograph by Annie Leibovitz […]


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: