Saturday, August 13, 2011
Herb Ritts...Getty Museum coughs up $1 Million for Pop Photographer's Collection! Richard Gere portrait insightful!
On the heels of snatching up a collection of starkly-beautiful black-and-white photographs by Herb Ritts, the Getty announced that a retrospective of the Pop Fashion Photographer's work is slated to be installed at the prestigious gallery in April (2012).
The acquisition (which rustled up a cool million for the Ritt's Foundation) included a handful of high-styled portraits which put an insightful spotlight on actor friends such as Richard Gere.
Ritts, who passed to spirit in 2004, was a successful in-demand photographer who carved a distinctive niche for himself in the highly-competitive commercial realms of high fashion where slick advertisers craved his scintillating unique images (oft-ignored by the Museum circuit who may have pooh-poohed his offerings for obvious elitist reasons).
For the Getty and the associate director Paul Martineau of the facility (who negotiated the deal in one fell swoop) it turned out to be quite a coup.
After all, the Ritts collection is the perfect body of work to round out a house collection that was wanting in many respects 'til now.
Notwithstanding, Martineau expects that the time is ripe to educate gallery patrons - and the public-at-large - as well.
"The compositions are so strong and simple that sometimes people think they're facile, but that's not the case," he underscored, when commenting on the relevance of the images in a historical context.
Before his untimely death, I often spotted Mr. Ritts in Starbucks in West Hollywood - sipping on a steaming-hot beverage - as he surreptitiously glanced at the multitude of faces that surrounded him here-there-and-everywhere in the cozy cafe.
Undoubtedly, each and every one fascinated (inspired?) the artistic genius with the exceptional eye.
Speaking of eyes!
On one occasion, when he turned in my direction, ours met.
The earth appeared to stand still for a moment before we both looked away.
Two ships passed silently in the night.
Peace - perfect peace - Herb.