Wolfsburg, Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg

Germany's Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg pays homage to the American artist Edward Steichen. Organized in collaboration with the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography in Minneapolis and Lausanne's Musée de l'Elysée, the exhibition of prints dating back to the 1920s and '30s focuses on Steichen's talent for fashion photography and celebrity portraiture. Though he was already an established painter and photographer, Edward Steichen's appointment as chief photographer for Condé Nast's Vogue and Vanity Fair in 1923 was undeniably a highpoint of his spectacular career.

Deviating from the austere setting of fashion photography in Paris, where models were no more than mere clothes horses, Steichen revolutionized the commercial style by creating a scenario through the use of props, such as decorative furniture that followed and complemented the contours of the model's silhouette.

Influenced by the history of painting, from Renaissance and Baroque to Art Deco portraiture, Steichen experimented with a broad range of poses, gestures and backdrops. Technique was another fundamental area of experimentation. No detail was overlooked, as set design, makeup, lighting and even retouching were all carefully considered under the photographer's diligent direction.

Steichen was not only a pioneer stylistically; his demand for authorship of published work – previously unheard-of within the fashion pages of Condé Nast – blazed the trail for today's most celebrated names, from Guy Bourdin to Nick Knight.

October 11, 2008 through January 4, 2009
Hollerplatz 1
38440 Wolfsburg
T. +49 (0)5361 26690