Cover image for Philippe Halsman : a retrospective : photographs from the Halsman Family collection
Philippe Halsman : a retrospective : photographs from the Halsman Family collection
Halsman, Philippe.
First edition.
Publication Information:
Boston : Little, Brown, [1998]

Physical Description:
211 pages : illustrations ; 34 cm
General Note:
Published in conjunction with a traveling exhibition opening at the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., November 6, 1998-February 7, 1999.

"A Bulfinch Press book."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TR681.F3 P58 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



During a career that spanned more than forty years, nearly every leading personality in the arts and many major world figures sat for Philippe Halsman's camera. In this major retrospective, published to coincide with a traveling exhibition, the best of Halsman's brilliant work is included. Here are his famous portraits, many of which have become the definitive image of the subject. Here too are testaments to his fascination with surrealism, such as his famous "Dali Atomicus", and other outrageous visual puns. His "jumpology" photos, which capture famous people from Richard Nixon to the Duke and Duchess of Windsor jumping for his camera, offer a glimpse into the whimsical and fantastical side of this artist.

From the most serious, deeply penetrating portrait of Albert Einstein to the fanciful image of Marilyn Monroe in midair, Philippe Halsman: A Retrospective is a look at a true master of photography. With an insightful introduction by Mary Panzer, superb duotone printing, and an inventive design, this is a truly definitive collection of Halsman's work.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Two of the greatest photographers of their or any other generation, Cartier-Bresson (b. 1908) and Halsman (1906^-79) could hardly be more different in their artistic approaches and temperaments. Serious, naturalistic, and documentary, Cartier-Bresson characteristically catches his subjects at just the right moment in terms of their physical and expressive attitudes and their positions within the photographic frame; artifice appears to be minimal in his work, and he famously does not crop, nor let others trim, his images. Halsman's work, on the other hand, seems artificial even at its most casual and is often best when most calculated, as in his many collaborations with Salvador Dali, several of which enliven the new retrospective of his portraits. Halsman loved to have fun--a predilection best expressed in his requesting his subjects to jump for the camera, with delightful results ranging from young Anthony Perkins' modern-dance-like kick-jump to poker-faced old Judge Learned Hand looking like he has levitated straight upward. Celebrity portraiture was a Halsman specialty, and he made some of the most familiar images of the stars of his time, as well as images, especially that of Humphrey Bogart in this book, that should be better known than they are. Cartier-Bresson's famous subjects are artists and writers more than entertainers and politicians, and he also photographed plenty of nonfamous persons--such as two prostitutes in Mexico City in 1934, an old eunuch from China's last imperial court, and an Orthodox Jew in the Warsaw ghetto in 1931--whose faces rank among the most haunting in the book. --Ray Olson

Library Journal Review

Photographs of film celebrities try to reveal more than their movies do. Whether looking surprised or carefully posed, celebrities have the visual control of themselves and how they look down to a science. This large, aggressive book of sometimes astonishing, sometimes quiet photographs shows the generous archive of black-and-white celebrity shots left to us by Philippe Halsman (1906‘79). Halsman brought originality, respect, and confidence to his work. What's missing here is Halsman himself getting his self-conscious subjects to leap or slouch or sneer or bask in their own glory; whether or not we admire the work of this incredibly gifted photographer, we can't help but appreciate his ability to reveal the people he shot. Jane Halsman Bello, the photographer's daughter, and her husband have arranged the book alphabetically by celebrity surname. Big, beautiful, and recommended for general collections.‘David Bryant, New Canaan P.L., CT (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.