Point and Shoot: Guy Bourdin’s Polaroids

Parisian photographer Guy Bourdin (1928–1991), a protegé of surrealist Man Ray, is widely credited with changing the face of fashion photography.

Utterly subverting the chipper sales pitches that dominated 1950s advertising, Bourdin’s work was moody, mysterious, alluring, aloof. The scenarios he concocted invariably raised more questions than the fleeting moments he froze could answer. And while we may never understand the exact pathos the troubled artist was trying to decipher (as one collaborator suggested, “What Guy did was conduct his own psychoanalysis [in the pages of] Vogue”)—studying 98 of his rare Polaroid test-shots at length in your living room can’t hurt.

Buy the book below, as part of our French Fling Pop-In Shop—and dive deeper into Bourdin’s infamously strange life at Vogue.com.


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