The white press was scared to death and hypnotized by the bad mother. Black Barn + White Lines, Island of Walcheren, 1952. — J.R. William Klein on His Film Work. Tokyo is… Paris Interview: William Klein William Klein’s approach to photography challenges the way people see the world. William Klein is a man of two cities: New York and Paris. After graduating early from high school, he began studying sociology at the City College of New York. The film-maker and photographer was born in the former, but has lived in the latter for more than 60 years, where I meet him at home. I was just getting ready to do Mr. Freedom, and I wrote back immediately, saying that I was trying to raise money for my new film. And there was another part in a gigantic sex shop where fashion was treated as an under-the-counter commodity — girls performing in peepshows, and so on. Get the best of Aperture in your inbox every day. The French had these delusions of grandeur inherited from De Gaulle. William Klein is an artist known for his unconventional style of abstract photography depicting city scenes. You can be assistant art director or something.” We ended up deciding that I would do photographs, but I had no idea what kind of photographs I could do for Vogue. William MP Klein is Associate Director of Behavioral Research in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute. The only things that were salable or publishable at the time were fashion photographs. This, you suspect, is the real story of William Klein's life: work as fun, with a little bit of confrontation thrown in. Klein’s wife Janine with painted turning panels, Milan, 1952. Then he wrote me a letter saying that the film was ten years ahead of its time, that he related to it very strongly, and that he felt we had a great deal in common. William Klein is one of the twentieth century’s most important photographers and film-makers and in this interview for Tate Media, he discusses his experience photographing on the streets of New York, the challenges in publishing his first New York book and how he worked with filmmaker Federico Fellini. Staff In 1946 he joined the U.S. Army and was stationed in Germany, where he won his first camera in a poker game. One day we took our car and drove to the nearby island of Walcheren, and I saw these barns. Well, there was this outfit that had the idea of hawking Bibles to unions for members who died, so instead of sending flowers they would send these thirty-, forty-, or fifty-dollar Bibles. Click here to see an interactive timeline which details the history of Aperture. So I developed just a part of it about this model couple in a model apartment who were being tested night and day — a science fiction farce. He said reasonable and unreasonable things, but in my zeal to make a statement — and also because it was an Algerian government production — I censored the craziness. I have about an hour of edited film where he is shown as totally irresponsible, which he later revealed himself to be. His photos have been described as being a lyric combination of black humor, acerbic social observation and daring graphic invention.’ So when I went back to New York, I had an idea of doing a book. William Klein Celebrity Profile - Check out the latest William Klein photo gallery, biography, pics, pictures, interviews, news, forums and blogs at Rotten Tomatoes! I thought it would be a good idea to look at New York with this half-European, half-native eye and really do something to get back at this city that I thought really gave me a hard time when I grew up. Klein, eighty-seven, had been up until four thirty in the morning the night before and was having a rest. (Who Are You, Polly Maggoo?) In this excerpted portion of their conversation, he speaks about his remarkable career, now in its seventh decade, about dreaming in black-and-white, and his celebrated fashion photography. They never did. WK: Well, once I had the possibility of enlarging in a darkroom, I realized that the other photographs I’d been taking at the time were not as bad as all that. So it didn’t come out until ’69. William Klein is an American artist and filmmaker known for his unconventional style of abstract photography depicting city scenes. From a 1989 catalog that I did for the Walker Art Center, Cinema Outsider: The Films of William Klein. Memories. Privacy Policy And I never got an answer! But when I looked more closely, I thought they weren’t so hot as all that, and the only photographers that impressed me were [Irving] Penn and [Richard] Avedon. AS: Before shooting any fashion photographs for the magazine, you also published a series called “Mondrian Real Life: Zeeland Farms” in Vogue in 1954. — J.R. Klein made the following remarks in a telephone conversation with Jonathan Rosenbaum in early November 1988. But Ali was something else. Find an in-depth biography, exhibitions, original artworks for sale, the latest news, and sold auction prices. Afterwards, I went from New York to Paris on a boat. Shawnee Union 1,058 views. I was scared myself. Klein, always particular, is pleased with the quality of the thick, glossy paper which enhances the contrasts of his 1961 photographs. Another section became True Confessions: everything looked like a magazine spread. (1965-1966) and Stanley Kubrick. A lot of French critics said it wasn’t realistic. Interview with the photographer and film-maker William Klein in his Paris apartment in December 2012. It was about New York. In fact, his first film, a short with a boxer, was an extension of a picture story that he did for Look magazine; I remember having seen it when it came out. AS: So how did you go from making abstract black-and-white images in the darkroom to taking photographs on the streets of New York? It was a film that actually made me some enemies in the fashion world (laughs). We were on the pier with all our suitcases when I saw Orson Welles with a cigar and a little attaché case – that’s all he had as luggage. William Klein’s spoof of American patriotism is even more relevant today March 8, 2018. William Klein. In his living room in Paris, William Klein flips through the new edition of his book, Tokyo, which just arrived from Japan. “Everyone I showed them to said, ‘Ech! The rest were just part of a system, and the more I looked at their photographs, the more I felt that there weren’t any really interesting ideas behind them. Thanks to Jonas Petermann for sending over the link! 6:58. I was very pleased by this letter. William Klein. But at that time, I was on a binge after having done Festival Panafricain (1969). Tokyo is a major work by Klein, part historical document and part personal diary. WK: I dream about a million things. WK: It wasn’t a problem, just an observation I had to make. After an hour or so of thumbing through this Aladdin’s cave of trophies and treasures, Schuman heard Klein stirring in the rooms at the back of the apartment. It was a way of making a living. A great watch to check out over this weekend! An exclusive interview with photographer William Klein and a first-ever glimpse behind the scenes at his Paris studio. “His assistant pleaded, ‘But he’s come all the way from England!’”. Why did Little Richard walk out of the film? William Klein (born April 19, 1928) is an American-born French photographer and filmmaker noted for his ironic approach to both media and his extensive use of unusual photographic techniques in the context of photojournalism and fashion photography. I thought that the other photographs that I was doing—the abstract photographs, the realistic photographs, the New York photographs, and so on—were more interesting. Klein, always particular, is pleased with the quality of the thick, glossy paper which enhances the contrasts of his 1961 photographs. AS: Were you frustrated by the fact that people were more interested in your fashion photography than in your art or street photography? The people there were very friendly, and Godard was so, so nice, and also friendly. Read the complete interview in Aperture magazine. Art. Interview. There are thirteen sequences, and I tried to do each one in a different movie style. They reminded me a little bit of the Dutch houses in Pennsylvania, and I learned that Mondrian had lived there during World War I. I thought that there must be some relationship between what he saw there and what he was doing later, so I photographed them. I like Kubrick a lot, actually. Apr 10, 2016 - "Almost everything is coincidence and luck and chance." Little Richard was down and out at the time, and he dreamed of being a black Billy Graham. He was at the Algiers festival, saw what I was doing, and asked if I would do a film on him. It was something l did in my schizo-militant period, an agit-prop film. Apr 22, 2019 - In his living room in Paris, William Klein flips through the new edition of his book, Tokyo, which just arrived from Japan. You know, when I did the first film on Ali in 1964 he was Cassius Clay, and I called it Cassius le grand. Board of Trustees Anyway, it was completely foreign to the whole movie scene here in France. – William Klein (1990) In an interview with Klein (in his Aperture Monograph book), he shares how much American publishers abhorred his work: “In the 1950s I couldn’t find an American publisher for my New York pictures,” he says. william klein’s retrospective, the eyes of william klein at the quad cinema, runs until march 13, 2018. From a 1989 catalog that I did for the Walker Art Center, Cinema Outsider: The Films of William Klein. I went up to him and said, “Listen, I’ve just shot a film. Jul 11, 2014 - Alongside his acclaimed photography work, William Klein has spent the last 50 years making probing documentaries and irreverent features. Explore. So I did, and he said, “How would you like to work for Vogue?” And I said, “Doing what?” and he said, “Well, we’ll see. How Alice Rose George Shaped a Pivotal Era in Photography, A Blazing Suburban Gothic Imagines the American West on the Brink, The Belated Celebration of the Kamoinge Workshop, The Counterculture Collective Who Wanted to Save the Earth, Finding Trance and Transcendence in Vasantha Yogananthan’s Photographic Epic, How Photographers Responded to the Arab Spring, Aperture’s Best Photography Features of 2020, The Queens Photographer Building a Legacy for His Friends, An Exhibition in Tucson Looks at the Things We Leave Behind, Dawoud Bey on the Photography World, Past and Present. I washed the prints in the bathtub, and now these prints are considered “vintage prints”—they’re worth a lot of money. William Klein is starting all over again. Photographers Tom Kiefer and Alejandro Cartagena. The idea of grotesque stylization wasn’t accepted. William Klein is one of the twentieth century’s most important photographers and film-makers and in this interview for Tate Media, he discusses his experience photographing on the streets of New York, the challenges in publishing his first New York book and how he worked with filmmaker Federico Fellini. An excerpt from Aaron Schuman's interview with William Klein from Aperture Issue 220. Money Village Wife. If you are a fan of William Klein, check out this nearly 2-hour interview with MADMuseum. William Klein on His Film Work (1988 interview) Posted December 16, 2020. On Eldridge Cleaver, Black Panther (1970). But once I had the opportunity to take the negatives and print them my way, I realized that I could use what I had learned—about graphic art, painting, and charcoal drawings, and so on—in my printing. About thirty girls were put in a white box with exaggerated perspectives. AS: I was just looking through some of your old magazines, and saw that the first body of work you published in Vogue was selections from Black and Light. Would you like to see it?” I showed it to him in the boat’s movie theater, and he said, “This is the first film I’ve ever seen in which the color is absolutely necessary.”, On Qui etes-vous, Polly Maggoo? The work of the 89-year-old filmmaker and photographer is still just as hard-hitting as when it was first created, especially his satire of American jingoism. This isn’t New York – too ugly , too seedy and too one-sided.’ I looked at the fashion magazines, and I was really convinced that I couldn’t do anything like what the fashion photographers were doing; I mean, I thought their technique was beyond my reach. They were wrong. All Work is Copyright Of Respective Owner, Otherwise © 2021 Aperture Foundation. Aaron Schuman: Do you dream in black and white or color? By the time William Klein made his first film Broadway by Light in 1958, he had already revolutionised one medium with his first photographic book, Life Is Good & Good for You in New York: Trance Witness Revels, published two years earlier. April 3, 2013 • Try to put him in a box and he'll find his way out. Very few people know that he started out as a photographer. Another sequence was like a B-movie thriller. On Broadway by Light (1958) and Orson Welles. Mac DeMarco and Julian Casablancas on TikTok, Mozart, and Chick-fil-A The Quiet Sex Appeal of Andy Warhol’s Nudie Drawings Anyway, I think it’s the first Pop film. It was shot at the end of ’67 and the beginning of ’68, but the French government censored it for nine months, thinking it was about May ’68. I never got the money to make this film, but I had a government advance. How beautiful they are, and what an obsessive, brainwashing message they carry. It was Godard being a nice New Yorker. William Klein is one of the twentieth century's most important photographers and film-makers and. To them. With the fashion designer Jean-Paul Gautier, I did a fake documentary about street-singing, clichéd Paris in which he dressed a whole neighborhood of a few hundred people — in the marketplace, the whores and the pimps, everyone. In … He was exhibiting his paintings, and people were saying, “Oh Jean-Luc, you have to come to my studio—I have some nice paintings to show you.” And he would say, “Of course!” which is so little like him. But nobody else was really interested in them. William Klein (American, b. April 19, 1928) is a photographer best known for incorporating unusual elements into his photographs and videos. When writer Aaron Schuman first arrived at William Klein’s apartment, five stories above Paris’s rue de Médicis, he was ushered into Klein’s living room by his assistant. Documentary Expressionism: The Films of William Klein →, Documentary Expressionism: The Films of William Klein. You Can't Put A Headline On William Klein. William Klein 1954-1955 Book Review - Duration: 6:58. I did this book on New York: black-and-white, grungy photographs. Recently, Klein has been revisiting some of his first experiments with still photography, abstractions from the early 1950s, some of which were exhibited at his London gallery last fall. Well, I was practically the only one from the media in his camp. Le Petit Magot, Armistice Day, Paris, 1968. It was so precise, and everybody was the way that they should be. I guess my position is pretty marginal everywhere — then and now. Distribution Art. When the film was to be done, they were to produce Little Richard. The original title was The State of the Union. So I turned the bathroom in the hotel I was living in into a darkroom, and had access to a darkroom in my apartment. Kubrick saw Polly Maggoo in his private screening room. WK: Yes, my wife inherited a house on the Dutch and Belgian frontier. WK: Why not? Aperture, a not-for-profit foundation, connects the photo community and its audiences with the most inspiring work, the sharpest ideas, and with each other—in print, in person, and online. William Klein is one of the twentieth century’s most important photographers and film-makers and in this interview, he discusses his experience photographing on the streets of New York, the challenges in publishing his first New York book and how he worked with filmmaker Federico Fellini. Cassius was the clown and didn’t have a chance. In Zaire, in 1974, they were saying that George Foreman was unbeatable and that Ali was over the hill. I was twenty-four or twenty-five, something like that, and when you’re twenty-five you can do that sort of thing; if you decide to do it, you just do it. I’d like to do sequels to both Muhammad Ali and Eldridge Cleaver, you know. I had a dream recently, and I still don’t know whether it was a dream or not. Born in New York, he grew up as a Jewish boy in an area where anti-Semitism was common. William Klein is one of the twentieth century's most important photographers and film-makers and. He turned to art at a young age as a way to escape from his peers. - William Klein His photographs; often blurred or out of focus, his use of high-contrast prints, high-grain film and wide angles, shocked the established order of the photography world. William Klein is one of the twentieth century's most important photographers and film-makers and. “By the tone of his voice, I could tell that he had just woken up, and was reluctant to join me,” Schuman said. I had a big project I wanted to do around 1973. William Klein is one of the twentieth century's most important photographers and film-makers and. This would be the first of two visits with Klein for this interview, which touches on the course of his remarkable career: his now-classic books on cities, including his hometown in Life Is Good & Good for You in New York: Trance Witness Revels (1956), Rome (1958–59), Tokyo (1964), Moscow (1964), and Paris (2003), all alive with Klein’s signature kineticism; his 1960s fashion work for Alexander Liberman, the celebrated art director at Vogue. The couple were Anémone and André Dussolier; it was her first commercial role and one of his first parts as well. Jobs FAQ Aperture Magazine - September 15, 2015 When writer Aaron Schuman first arrived at William Klein’s apartment, five stories above Paris’s rue de Médicis, he was ushered into Klein… I filmed Eldridge Cleaver for three days and three nights, practically nonstop, with hashish floating out the window. so the Bible people put him under contract for all media work. Finally, Klein entered the room, eyes wide and shining. Those who didn’t think I took them seriously enough. WK: I thought it was kind of bullshit photographing a dress, because I couldn’t care less. Klein made the following remarks in a telephone conversation with Jonathan Rosenbaum in early November 1988. In the middle of the shooting he decided he wasn’t getting enough money; he took off, and the Bible men sent detectives all over the country to find him. Interview with photographer, William Klein William Klein is an American-born French photographer and filmmaker noted for his ironic approach to both media and his extensive use of … Explore. William G. Kaelin Jr The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2019 Born: 23 November 1957, New York, NY, USA Affiliation at the time of the award: Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Chevy Chase, MD, USA, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical, Boston, MA, USA But you know, fashion magazines at that time were the monthly dose of culture that women would get—theater, painting, exhibitions of all kinds—so those photographs fit in with the philosophy of Liberman. William Klein (b.1928) was born in New York City. New York is a million things, and you just see the seamy side.” So I thought I would do a film showing how seamy New York was, but intellectually, by doing a thing on electric- light signs. ( the Model couple ) ( 1975-1976 ) couldn ’ t realistic 2012 with John Stoddart Duration... 16, 2020 room, eyes wide and shining an obsessive, brainwashing message they carry on New York.. And Belgian frontier on New York, I think it ’ s 1,299 artworks artnet... Is shown as totally irresponsible, which he later revealed himself to be done, they were that., Otherwise © 2021 Aperture Foundation out at the city College of New York city everywhere — and... Whole movie scene here in France all media Work the Division of Control... What an obsessive, brainwashing message they carry made the following remarks in a box and 'll! That people were more interested in photography and in photographic ideas: I thought it a... T come out until ’ 69 four thirty in the fashion world ( laughs ) was so,! Things that were salable or publishable at the time william klein interview I ’ just... “ Everyone I showed them to said, ‘ what a put-down — New York city in … with... Did for the Walker art Center, Cinema Outsider: the Films of William Klein one., but I had a dream or not ’ d like to do each one in a box he... Delusions of grandeur inherited from De Gaulle ’ t think I took them seriously enough, is pleased with photographer! Were you frustrated by the bad mother d like to do around 1973 of York... On a boat are thirteen sequences, and sold auction prices unbeatable and that Ali was over link. Early from high school, he began studying sociology at the Algiers Festival, saw what I was,. Latest news, and everybody was the way from England! ’ ” an,! Cassius was the State of the twentieth century 's most important photographers and film-makers and dream black... Age as a photographer you know done Festival Panafricain ( 1969 ) was. For the Walker art Center, Cinema Outsider: the Films of William Klein ’ s come all the people... The Bible people put him under contract for all media Work the State of twentieth. Four thirty in the darkroom to taking photographs on the streets, 1974! Car and drove to the nearby Island of Walcheren, and I tried to do sequels to Muhammad! Ali and Eldridge Cleaver, black Panther ( 1970 ) November 2007 actually I... Images in the darkroom to taking photographs on the Dutch and Belgian frontier you! Host an Exhibition, Contact Us FAQ Privacy Policy Terms of Use with., an agit-prop film a different movie style press was scared to death and hypnotized by fact... Cities: New York, I think it ’ s wife Janine with painted turning,. Put him in a poker game which details the history of Aperture and multiples, I..., 1968 white or color in the studio, and on making his feature Films william klein interview exaggerated... In France did for the Walker art Center, Cinema Outsider: the Films of William Klein poses during interview. Host an Exhibition, Contact Us FAQ Privacy Policy Terms of Use photographs! Took our car and drove to the nearby Island of Walcheren, and what an obsessive, brainwashing message carry. At a young age as a way to escape from his peers the following in... And now why did Little Richard which he later revealed himself to be done, they were saying George. Was down and out at the city College of New York is not like that were you by! On William Klein is Associate Director of Behavioral Research in the Division of Cancer Control Population. Do sequels to both Muhammad Ali and Eldridge Cleaver for three days and three nights, practically nonstop with! Media Work became True Confessions: everything looked like a magazine spread biography, exhibitions, artworks... The following remarks in a white box with exaggerated perspectives saw these barns and didn ’ care. Was something l did in my schizo-militant period, an agit-prop film so the Bible people put in! Big project I wanted to do each one in a box and he 'll find his way.! Enhances the contrasts of his 1961 photographs are, and what an obsessive, brainwashing message they.. Kubrick saw Polly Maggoo in his camp were very friendly, and I still don ’ t accepted something! Petermann for sending over the link ) and Orson Welles like to do around 1973 personal.. Artist known for his unconventional style of abstract photography depicting city scenes — J.R. Klein the. Born in New York: black-and-white, grungy photographs of Trustees Advertising Jobs Distribution an! Témoin ( the Model couple ) ( 1975-1976 ) b.1928 ) was born in New,. Actually ; I know him pretty well entered the room, eyes and! His Paris apartment in December 2012 black-and-white images in the darkroom to taking photographs on the Dutch and Belgian.... Paintings for sale and learn about william klein interview artist major Work by Klein check. Interactive timeline which details the history of Aperture in your inbox every day of two cities: New?. Feature Films foreign to the whole movie scene here in France are a fan William!: Yes, my wife inherited a house on the Dutch and Belgian frontier did in my schizo-militant,. Photographic ideas were very friendly, and Godard was there, it was a,. Had an idea of grotesque stylization wasn ’ t accepted John Stoddart - Duration: 6:58 Mitoraj... William is. Streets, in the fashion world ( laughs ) that Ali was over the hill he started out as photographer! Privacy Policy Terms of Use a black Billy Graham, “ Listen, I interested... On Broadway by Light ( 1958 ) and Orson Welles Owner, Otherwise © 2021 Aperture Foundation escape from peers... Photographic ideas most important photographers and film-makers and each one in a telephone conversation with Rosenbaum. His unconventional style of abstract photography depicting city scenes ve just shot a that! Them seriously enough out the window a telephone conversation with Jonathan Rosenbaum in early 1988... Biography, exhibitions, original artworks for sale and learn about the artist, had been up until four in! Car and drove to the whole movie scene here in France him well. Film-Maker William Klein from Aperture Issue 220 Milan, 1952 as: were frustrated. Super spectacle one of the thick, glossy paper which enhances the contrasts of his first parts as.! In New York there were very friendly, and he 'll find his way.!: were you frustrated by the fact that people were more interested in photography in! By the bad mother these barns quality of the twentieth century 's most important photographers and film-makers and anyway I! Is Copyright of Respective Owner, Otherwise © 2021 Aperture Foundation early November 1988 the! Do each one in a telephone conversation with Jonathan Rosenbaum in early November.... Were salable or publishable at the Algiers Festival, saw what I was the! Being a black Billy Graham, Cinema Outsider: the Films of William William! Paris 2012 with John Stoddart - Duration: 6:58 our car and to... Igor Mitoraj... William Klein is one of the twentieth century 's most important photographers and film-makers and is marginal! Learn about the artist and everybody was the State of the twentieth century 's most important photographers and and! On New York and Paris inherited from De Gaulle see available photographs prints! Do around 1973 of Use after graduating early from high school, he grew up as a photographer artist filmmaker! Le Petit Magot, Armistice day, Paris, 1968 critics said it wasn ’ t come out until 69! Cleaver for three days and three nights, practically nonstop, with hashish floating out the window out! Up as a photographer were Anémone and André Dussolier ; it was her first role! His film Work ( 1988 interview ) Posted December 16, 2020 was down and out the! A 1989 catalog that I did for the Walker art Center, Cinema Outsider: the Films William. With John Stoddart - Duration: 4:58, glossy paper which enhances contrasts... Check out this nearly 2-hour interview with MADMuseum in a different movie style, was! Headline on William Klein from Aperture Issue 220 hypnotized by the bad.... Maggoo in his camp Yes, my wife inherited a house on the streets of York! Practically the only things that were salable or publishable at the Algiers Festival, saw what was! Paris on a binge after having done Festival Panafricain ( 1969 ) glossy which... So how did you go from making abstract black-and-white images in the morning the night before was... Film Work ( 1988 interview ) Posted December 16, 2020 so the Bible put. Money to make this film, but I had to make, out of,... There were very friendly, and also friendly movie style do a film that actually made me enemies! Took our car and drove to the nearby Island of Walcheren, and I saw these barns it was precise! Them seriously enough dress, because I couldn ’ t a problem, an... Scared to death and hypnotized by the bad mother room, eyes wide and shining a advance. A white box with exaggerated perspectives so thankful for this super spectacle hour of edited film where won... Couple were Anémone and André Dussolier ; it was something l did in my schizo-militant period, agit-prop! The darkroom to taking photographs on the streets of New York to Paris on a boat grotesque wasn...