Nov 21, 2019

Mock LIFE Magazine Cover with Self-Portrait Holding Shutter Release

Mock LIFE Magazine Cover with Self-Portrait Holding Shutter Release


Ilse Bing

(American, 1899–1998)

Unique collage of a gelatin silver print adhered to November 26, 1945 cover of LIFE magazine with affixed typewritten mailing label

Image: 35.6 x 26.7 cm (14 x 10 1/2 in.)

Gift of Michael Mattis and Judith Hochberg 2019.273



Living in New York provoked a stylistic shift in Ilse Bing’s work. The city’s “clear and differentiating light, which [made her] see things in sharp detail,” inspired brighter and larger prints. Her compositions separated the forms from each other. Bing attributed these changes to a sense of isolation, which is mirrored in these self-portraits. Living in New York, she said, was like being “in a vacuum . . . looking out on the world as if from inside a space capsule.”

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