Following the promised gift of more than 150 photographs from the Irving Penn Foundation in 2015, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has organised the most comprehensive survey yet assembled of the American photographer’s work. Irving Penn: Centennial (24 April-30 July) includes more than 200 photographs that chronicle each period of his career, from fashion studies for Vogue magazine to pictures of urban workers to portraits of cultural figures like Picasso. Penn captured this 1957 photograph of the Spanish artist after he persisted in securing an appointment, despite being told that Picasso was not home. When Picasso finally emerged “in a grey sweatshirt, looking like a high-school basketball coach”, Penn was afforded ten minutes with him, says the show’s curator Maria Morris Hambourg. Picasso “playfully donned a hat and Spanish cape and coyly engaged in costume play”, she says, and Penn took this indelible portrait.
When Irving Penn forced his way into a meeting with Picasso: MoMA's new retrospective on the iconic photographer
Costume play and urban decay through the lens of the master
31 March 2017