The pictorialist master; Edward Steichen’s portrait of Gloria Swanson

Edward Steichen (1879-1973), a famed Pictorialist photographer and painter in the United States and abroad worked for Vogue and Vanity Fair.
His portrait of Gloria Swanson has taken on iconic masterpiece status overtime. Created in 1924, just as sound films were emerging & Swanson’s career was in decline. She looks haunting and inscrutable, forever veiled in the whisper of a distant era. Steichen’s photograph has elements of turn-of-the-century pictorialism (moody and delicate, the subject seeming to peer from the darkness, as if from jungle foliage), yet it also projects modernist boldness, with its pin-sharp precision and graphic severity.
I am not the author of this image. All rights go to Edward Steichen.
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Check out Greta Garbo’s amazing portraits by Clarence Bull here