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  • Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist

  • Literature

    Angeletti and Oliva, In Vogue: The Illustrated History of the World's Most Famous Fashion Magazine, p. 18; Devlin, Vogue Book of Fashion Photography, p. 46; Fraser, On The Edge: Images from 100 Years of Vogue, p. 25; Hall-Duncan, The History of Fashion Photography, p. 65; High Museum of Art, Chorus of Light: Photographs from the Sir Elton John Collection, p. 192; Kazmaier, Horst: Sixty Years of Photography, pl. 8; Koetzle, Photo Icons: Volume 2, pp. 38 and 43; Lawford, Horst: His Work and His World, p. 184; Lawford and Valentine, Horst 1930 - 1987, Horst 1930 - 1987, p. 28; American Vogue, 15 September 1939; French Vogue, December 1939

  • Catalogue Essay

    Horst P. Horst’s legacy is studded with innumerable images that have defined the genre of fashion photography. In 1931, at the age of 25, Horst published his first photograph in an assignment for French Vogue, which subsequently led to his regular contribution to British Vogue the following year. By using his unique eye and familiarity with architecture and art history, Horst meticulously staged images innovative in their appeal and informed in their historical references, while at the same time showcasing the clothes, or in the case of the present lot, the corset designed by Detolle for the fashion house Mainbocher.

    Of the photograph’s creation, Horst noted: “It was created by emotion… It was the last photo I took in Paris before the war. I left the studio at 4.00 a.m., went back to the house, picked up my bags and caught the 7.00 a.m. train to Le Havre to board the Normandie… The photograph is peculiar— for me. While I was taking it, I was thinking of all that I was leaving behind.” Mainbocher Corset, taken in 1939, is imbued with art historical references in the figure’s contrapposto, the gentle undulation of musculature, and the chiaroscuro lighting. Horst’s retrospection, it appears, was on literal and intellectual levels alike. The images Round The Clock I, and II, (lots 17 and 18, respectively) were taken almost 50 years after the aforementioned image. Remarkably, despite the passage of time, Horst adhered to the same classical visual vocabulary he had relied on throughout his career. Commissioned by Round The Clock Hosiery, Horst produced images that are timeless in their appeal and exuberantly celebratory of the female form, beauty and allure.

4

Mainbocher Corset, Paris, August 11

1939
Platinum palladium print, printed 1985.
17 11/16 x 14 1/4 in. (44.9 x 36.2 cm).
Signed in pencil on the recto; signed, inscribed in pencil, copyright credit and medium stamps on the verso.

Estimate
$20,000 - 30,000 

Sold for $57,500

Photographs

9 April 2011
New York