Yousuf Karsh and Edward Steichen - Musee McCord

Temporary exhibition

December 2, 2010 — April 25, 2011

Yousuf Karsh and Edward Steichen

The Art of the Celebrity Portrait

This exhibition has ended

This exhibition is organized by the National Gallery of Canada.

Consisting of 35 photographs from the NGC’s collection, this exhibition illustrates both the connections and distinctions of two of the 20th century’s most renowned celebrity portraitists.

The relationship between the two photographers began in 1936, when Yousuf Karsh first visited Edward Steichen’s studio in New York. Working with a clientele composed of individuals celebrated for their power, wealth, or talent, both Steichen and Karsh displayed an ability to engage with their sitters on equal terms and to capture their characters without compromising their standards of artistic integrity or formal excellence.

Although the young Karsh clearly learned a great deal about celebrity portraiture from Steichen, a photographer whose work he studied from the days of his apprenticeship in photography, he also developed a unique portrait style that makes his work so readily recognizable to us today.

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