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Art Kane by Pete Turner & Henry Leutwyler


I first knew of Art Kane as an art director and later met him as a photographer. When he decided to become a photographer he applied his design skills to do concepts within the photographic frame. He came into photography with his own very personal approach as a graphic designer and this is what made Art Kane so unique. I will never forget his photograph of Louis Armstrong in a rocking chair against a golden sunset. This was not a portrait of Armstrong, it was a portrait of his life!  It was simple and wonderful and very much Art Kane’s photographic style.

Pete Turner, photographer
As a young boy, around sixteen, I discovered the photographs of Art Kane; the famous flag image, Louis Armstrong, but my personal favorite was ‘Harlem 1958’. My father was a jazz pianist so I was lucky enough to know many of the musicians photographed personally.
This particular image became one of my most important visual references throughout the years along with the work of Mr. Penn, Richard Avedon, Paul Outerbridge Jr., Drtikol and Robert Frank to name just a few.
When I moved to Paris to become a photographer in earnest I discovered the brilliant images Art Kane created for Cacharel. I quickly realized that good photography goes hand in hand with good concept and Kane was clearly the master. Not only was he an excellent story teller but technically brilliant years before Photoshop with his layered, multi-transparencies. And with his ingenious use of Kodachrome he was unparalleled and remains so to this day. He was also one of the few photographers whose body of work varied from fashion to portraiture to music. This makes him difficult to categorize and impossible to ignore which gives him a very important place in the history books.

Henry Leutwyler, photographer

Art Kane
Reel Art Press
Photography by Art Kane
by Jonathan Kane (Author), Holly Anderson (Author), Peter Doggett (Introduction), Michael Somoroff (Foreword)
320pp; Hardback w/slipcase;

200 colour & b/w photographs
304 x 245 mm / 12 x 10 in
ISBN: 978-1-909526-12-9

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