"Photographing a cake can be art" —Irving Penn
Penn's fascination with still life is evident in the dramatic range of photography he has produced in this genre. His first assignment as a Vogue studio photographer was a still-life cover, and over the years he completed striking still-life product shots. In the 1970s, Penn produced a startlingly inventive series of still-lifes using memento mori objects and urban detritus such as cigarette butts, decaying fruit and vegetables, and discarded clothing. He successfully challenged the traditional idea of beauty, giving dignity and nobility to common street trash with rich hues and gorgeous lighting. Ironically, these photographs act as a dark reflection of the consumer products Penn shot commercially. (From: http://www.tfaoi.com/aa/1aa/1aa393.htm)
The Irving Penn Foundation. CLICK HERE.
CLICK HERE for a biography of Irving Penn.
CLICK HERE for a Penn at Museum of Contemporary Photography.
CLICK HERE for New York Times obituary of Penn