Recognized as an icon of 20th century photography for her ability to transform seemingly average subjects into compelling art, Lisette Model continues to resonate with new audiences long after her death in 1983. An exhibition coming to the Boca Raton Museum of Art, in partnership with the National Gallery of Canada, will feature 71 photographs from a collection of 293 prints, and includes several of Model’s iconic pieces.
Born in Vienna in 1901, Model’s photos were regularly featured in Harper’s Bazaar and were included in the inaugural photography exhibition at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. In her early 30s, she shifted from music — after studying with composer Arnold Shoenberg — to visual art, while residing for several years in France. There she established herself as a photographer, joining a vital circle of artists that included André Kertész, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Brassai.
While in France, she completed a well-known series that arguably launched her celebrity. Set on the French Riviera in the 1930s, her subjects were the well-fed of the Promenade des Anglais. This presentation of people as they are, without pretense or judgement, informed Model’s signature style. She continued to gain notoriety for her unapologetic portraits and candid street photography in Paris, Nice, and later New York.
Boca Raton Museum of Art
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