A massive retrospective of William Klein's work featuring nearly 300 works including photographs, paintings, films, photo books, and other media from his expansive and boundary-pushing six-decade career will be on view at ICP until September 12.
It's the first one of its kind in the U.S. in over a generation—Klein was primarily known as a street or fashion photographer but he was an artist of many mediums. The show will explore his life and career through a kind of timeline showing his development as an artist in wildly inventive photographic studies of New York, Rome, Paris, Moscow, and Tokyo to bold and witty fashion photographs; from cameraless abstract photography to iconic celebrity portraits; from excerpts of documentary films about Muhammad Ali, Eldridge Cleaver, and the Pan-African Festival of Algiers to scripted films about the beauty industry, imperialism, and consumer culture.
"This exhibition at ICP is a homecoming of sorts for Klein, who was born in upper Manhattan in 1928 and began his photography career on our city’s streets,” said ICP Director David Little. “He then became a truly international artist, living most of his life in Paris and capturing the unique character of global cities in his renowned photobooks. Klein is a living legend of image-making, and ICP is honored to celebrate a prodigious career that influenced and inspired generations.”