Ulf Erdmann Ziegler – Ulf Erdmann Ziegler on the death of William Klein – Article

There may not be much space left Between the tree and the barkbut the competition there is slim. William Cline He was someone who navigated the fine layers of the in-between realms, between document and fashion, photography and film, fiction and document. Where was this supposed to go and who was it intended? So I turned around and saw the enormous shadows. Shadows in motion. His work was brutal criticism, gloom and hostility. Perhaps Fassbinder was more consistent or Diane Arbus reached her goal early with fewer resources. But that was the league that William Klein played in. And play long.

Born on April 19, 1926, and raised as a Jewish child in an Irish neighborhood in New York, he initially did not believe that In the house something warm you have to do. He was too young to watch his father slip into depression, but 1930s America, almost off-putting, was his childhood. But in the family, many influential business lawyers in Hollywood: he wanted to escape this fate.

As a post-war American soldier, Klein learned Germany in ruins Knows then went as a civilian to Paris, where he was Fernand Leger I learned to draw, at least as an idea, and soon the girl with the magical name learned to draw Jane Florin Married / married. Who wouldn’t? They had a son named Pierre. After her death in 2005, William Klein resided in his bright apartment overlooking the Luxembourg Garden, surrounded by his archives and books.

Most Americans who settled permanently in Europe after the war were jazz musicians, many of whom were black. They are simply tired of apartheid and the sinister gameplay of the Cold War. Like many black artists, Klein felt isolated, or at least alienated, from America. This was revealed when he returned to New York in 1955 and found the city in which he was a child was frozen. black dot grave Recognized where overly happy freaks and dwarves reach for mischief. His paintings breathed in excitement and breathed out terror. William Klein suddenly became a photographer without a teacher.

Like many creators right after the war, Klein wouldn’t have been what he was without him Alexander LiebermanTechnical Director of Vogue magazine, who wanted to see very different images in the newspapers of the spread of fashion and tried to liberate the pervasive fashion from the sterility of the middle class in the streets, everyday life, and breaking the rules. On the other hand, photographers had a lot of opportunities out there; On the other hand they were close to Vogue magazine Committed to founding fashion and nurturing Lieberman.

Klein solved the problem ten years later by stepping away from both commercial and non-commercial photography and making a sinister satirical film about a young Brooklyn woman named Dorothy McGowan, a model who is devoured by fashion devices. She has no idea who she is, which is why the movie’s title was “Who Are You, Polly Magoo?” (1966). Those who found this scene over the top certainly weren’t happy with Superman’s massive spy satire “Mr. Liberty” (1969), whose goal was to unmask American imperialism. Although he mocked communist officials alike. Oddly enough, the film was misunderstood as an attack on the honor of the French nation and half a year Officially banned. With the advent of “Mr. Freedom” hysteria, a penchant for loud allegory with echo, which continued so well in his later work that one did not know exactly whether it was part of the object of study or was to be taken as a personal component. Klein also portrayed an episode in the intervention film “Verne von Vietnam” (1967). Other directors of this film are Agnès Varda, Jean-Luc Godard and Alain Resnais. In this regard, Klein was a stranger to Nouvelle Vague.

A scene from the movie “Who Are You, PPolly Maggoo”

Here, in the documentary and essay, William Klein proves his strength, i.e. the observation Behind all the clichés is a reportage. In 1964 he went to Zaire cassius clay (later: Muhammad Ali) Stirring up people against his American boxing opponent, George Foreman, who surprised everyone when he arrived, was not white. One of the great documentaries, “The French” (1982), was not about the French but about a famous tennis tournament, and it showed the sport as tough and close to the ground, with straightforward and vulnerable hostility. male bonds. The microphone picked up the most likely curses. young all his life 250 ads He was supposed to have been portrayed as being completely anti-witchcraft in the end, and he was at his best when there was no need to say it.

It’s amazing – and rare in any work of art – how William Klein’s cinematic work revealed such strength after he had already done so. Black and white photography It gave an important impetus, all the way to Japan. His little book (at the time still) an obnoxiously witty little pictorial—he called “Life is Good and Good for You in New York”—was published in 1956 by literary publisher Seuil, where Some Chris Marker Headed the travel book department at that time. In the 1960s, this was followed by extensive volumes full of adventures about “Rome”, “Moscow” and “Tokyo” (that’s what they were really called), which he designed himself and entered as co-publisher of German editions. That at that time the bookseller Picture books as travel books Looking at her, the reception on the verge of misunderstanding, really made them famous.

While William Klein was one of the co-inventors of street photography That’s right, he was rarely a secret observer. On the contrary, he specialized in families, groups, and cohorts (also random), which he photographed for amusement and Angry, which then leaped into the face of the viewer in a gloomy but cunning manner. It was his way of showing how the abnormal becomes visible under every ordinary, while at the same time, ironically, sowing doubts about whether there is any concept of reality at all in these peep boxes of the strange. It is this paradoxical aggression that allows his images to live for a long time.

William Klein died in Paris on Saturday at the age of 96.

Ulf Erdmann Ziegler

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