The magazine of the photo-essay
July 2020 issue
Robert Mapplethorpe
“A free, really high quality photo-essay magazine. Fabulous!” Stephen Fry. British actor, writer and film maker
Robert Mapplethorpe is widely considered one of the twentieth century’s most important and influential artists, known for his groundbreaking and provocative work. He studied painting, drawing, and sculpture at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn in the 1960s and first started taking photographs when he acquired a Polaroid camera in 1970. Several years later, he started shooting with a Hasselblad medium-format camera and began documenting his circle of friends and acquaintances. Over nearly two decades, Mapplethorpe created images that both challenge and adhere to classical aesthetic standards: stylised compositions of male and female nudes, powerful flower still lifes, and studio portraits of artists, musicians, celebrities, socialites, children, and even the occasional cooperative dog. He also explored sexually explicit subject matter that others shied away from, including New York’s underground S&M scene. Mapplethorpe’s vast, powerful and emotive body of work shown in this latest volume, Rober Mapplethorpe, has established him as one of the most important artists of the twentieth century.
Self portrait, 1980.
Patti Smith.
Andy Warhol.
Phillip Prioleau.
Alistair Butler.
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Picture credit: (c) Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation Inc. Robert Mapplethorpe, edited and designed by Mark Holborn and Dimitri Levas, with a foreword by Patti Smith, an introduction by Andrew Sullivan and an essay by Arthur C. Danto, is published by Phaidon on 30 April, £125 (