This monograph on the work of Gideon Lewin, master printer and assistant to Richard Avedon, revealsmoments never told, stories never heard, and a life that only a few ever experienced. It is a story of a close working relationship and collaboration with a master.
Avedon: Behind the Scenes, 1964-1980 relates Lewin's personal experiences working with Richard Avedon for 16 years. It is about the hard work, the intrigues, the energy, the mysteries, the humor, and the commitment to creating images that were larger-than-life and will last for generations. This book illuminates many details about preparations for Avedon's major exhibitions, the master classes he was a part of, and many behind-the-scenes stories working on fashion collections in Paris and in New York for Harper's Bazaar and Vogue, photographing the world's most famous personalities and most beautiful women: Sophia Loren, Audrey Hepburn, Catherine Deneuve, Cher, Jean Shrimpton, Veruschka, Twiggy, Rene Russo, Patti Hansen, and Lauren Hutton. Finally, this book opens a window on the lighter side of Richard Avedon, as well as his total dedication to the art of photography in his determination to leave a legacy unlike that of any other photographer. With about 200 photographs Avedon: Behind the Scenes, 1964-1980 is a singular and remarkable journey.
GIDEON LEWIN was born in Jerusalem, Israel. He graduated from the Art Center College of Design, Los Angeles, majoring in photography and advertising. As an established photographer for 40 years, he has collaborated with American and European fashion designers on advertising, promotions, and books, as well as beauty campaigns for Clairol, Revlon, Colgate, and Mirabella. He has also created editorial work for Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, Avenue, Lear's, Elle, Lifestyles, and Travelgirl magazines. Lewin's portraits include many celebrities and personalities of note in politics and the arts. He has collaborated on Unmistakably Mackie: The Fashion and Fantasy of Bob Mackie, and fashion books with Bill Blass and others. A retrospective exhibit of his work was presented by the Museum of Photography in Mougins, France, and a one-man exhibition, Platinum Nudes, at the Neuhoff Gallery, New York. Early in his career, Lewin was the studio manager and "right-hand man" to Richard Avedon for 16 years.
"The true strength of the volume lies in its descriptions of Avedon, whom Lewin describes as "totally committed to photography, consciously creating imagery with a fierce determination to leave a legacy." Lewin's enthusiastic testimonial will thrill Avedon's fans."
– Publishers Weekly, STAR Review
"The author relates a timespan when brilliance reigned and creativity and talent were peaking due to the cast of characters, named and unnamed, who made up this ephemeral, fantastical, and yet technical world of fashion photography as well as the mindset of one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century."
– New York Journal of Books
"At once a dazzling retrospective and a profound meditation on Avedon's inner life, Lewin's book showcases the singular vision of the prolific photographer, while also highlighting the vast network of assistants, designers, artists, and technicians that helped make his vision a reality."