Tuesday 27 October 2009

Norman Parkinson at Somerset House (written for Fashion156 blog)

Earlier this week Vicki posted about the new strong Norman Parkinson exhibition at Somerset House, inspiring me to pop down in person. Held in the three Terrace rooms 56 of Parkinson’s most iconic images are on display to represent his 56-year career as the nation’s most celebrated fashion portrait photographer.
Parkinson began his career in 1934 when he opened his first studio after completing a short apprenticeship with the court photographers Speaight + Sons. Since his emergence on the photography scene Parkinson revolutionised fashion photography by doing something completely unprecedented at the time- taking his models and subjects outside of the rigid studio environment, in favour of the streets. By moving his models from a static studio with limited possibilities Parkinson reverted to dynamic outdoor photography in order to capture the freedom and movement of his models in a more natural environment. It is this that set Parkinson’s photography apart from his contemporaries and is why for me he is one of the greatest British fashion visionaries ever to have lived.
To continue reading Norman Parkinson at Somerset House visit the Fashion156 blog.

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