Published by Steidl. Text by Nathalie Herschdorfer.
Henry Leutwyler is certainly no stranger to the art of ballet—for many years he photographed on stage and behind the scenes at the New York City Ballet, culminating in his book Ballet, since published by Steidl in two editions. Yet Misty Copeland pushes Leutwyler’s vision into a new direction: neither a strict portrait of the renowned ballerina nor a mere documentation of her exceptional craft, this is an intimate collaboration between photographer and subject that explores the subtleties of Copeland as a performer, person, persona and idol.
Born in Kansas City, Missouri, and raised in San Pedro, California, Copeland’s biography has all the arc of a fairy tale: she was living in a shabby hotel room, struggling with five siblings for a place to sleep on the floor, when she began ballet studies at the late age of 13. She soon proved a prodigy: within three months of her first class she was dancing en pointe, in just over a year she was performing professionally. In 2015 she became the first African American woman appointed principal dancer at the prestigious American Ballet Theater in the 75 years of its existence. In Copeland’s own words: “The path to your success is not as fixed and inflexible as you think.”
Born in 1961 in Switzerland, Henry Leutwyler moved to Paris in 1985 and established himself there as an editorial photographer. In 1995 he moved to New York City where he lives and works today. His books with Steidl are Neverland Lost: A Portrait of Michael Jackson (2010), Ballet: Photographs of the New York City Ballet (2012), Document (2016), Hi there! (2020) and the forthcoming Philippe Halsman: A Photographer’s Life.
Published by Steidl. Text by Irene Halsman, Oliver Halsman Rosenberg, Mark Lubell.
In this book New York-based photographer Henry Leutwyler (born 1961) documents the professional and private life of renowned Life magazine photographer Philippe Halsman, who had a total of 101 Life covers to his name—more than any other photographer. Leutwyler first saw Halsman’s work as a teenager in an exhibition at the International Center of Photography in 1979; now, more than 40 years later, his fascination has finally found fruition.
With his trademark approach, both forensic and imaginative, he teases out the meanings held within inanimate objects and how they reveal their owner’s personality. In close collaboration with the Halsman Archive, Leutwyler has photographed hundreds of objects belonging to Halsman—from his cameras to his glasses, from his passport to a range of letters (from Janet Leigh, Richard Avedon and Richard Nixon, to name but a few), from table-tennis bats and balls to a collection of jewel-like, paper-wrapped soaps from around the world—in the words of Halsman’s grandson Oliver Halsman Rosenberg, “magical evidence of a time that will never exist again.”
Published by Steidl. Text by Graham Howe, Henry Leutwyler.
As with his past photographic portrayals of celebrity relics, Henry Leutwyler’s (born 1961) method in Hi there! is to coax an object’s meanings to the surface in photos at once deadpan and forensic, but observed with a reverence that makes it come alive. Here we peer into Frank Sinatra’s private pocket phone book. From what today seems like the quaintness of analogue-era 1970s, we come to know Sinatra’s circle and speculate on the meaning of those relationships. The over 100 names and numbers here include direct lines to Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Spiro Agnew, Barry Goldwater and other important governmental figures, through which Sinatra had immediate access to the American political machine.
With connections to American businessmen Walter Annenberg, Laurance Rockefeller, Marvin Davis and John Kluge (at the time reputedly the richest person in the country), Sinatra knew just how to tap into capital. Among his fellow artists who were just a phone call away were Dean Martin, Gregory Peck, Roger Moore, Jerry Lewis and Buddy Rich. We even learn the names of Sinatra’s doctors and dentists, no doubt the best in their profession for Ol’ Blue Eyes.
Published by Steidl. Introduction by Karen Eileen Overbey.
New York-based photographer Henry Leutwyler's new book Document examines humble objects from iconic moments such as the first moonwalk, political assassinations or episodes in the lives of musicians, artists and athletes. Ten years in the making, Document is essentially a collection of portraits of things: Mahatma Gandhi's sandal, Alan Shepard's golf club, Janis Joplin's acoustic guitar, Jack Ruby's handgun. Leutwyler shows us these objects close up--straight on and without backdrop--in a style that is equal parts still life, portraiture and crime-scene photography.
Though isolated from their contexts and owners, these objects are the testaments of bodily histories, the traces of personalities and the stuff of our collective memory. Document invites us to engage with our "icons" in wholly new ways, and to see our history differently, through the unexpected emotional charge of singular objects.
Published by Steidl. Introduction by Peter Martins.
After four years of collaboration with choreographer Peter Martins and the New York City Ballet, Swiss portrait photographer Henry Leutwyler was granted unprecedented backstage access to the Company during the winter of 2012. The resulting book, Ballet, reflects 30 years of his passion for the art form, realized in 30 days of photographing. Leutwyler inhabited the shadows of the stage and became "invisible," recording images of the dancers using nothing more than his 35mm Leica. He was able to explore the performers' immediate space, affording a more abstract portrait of their frenzied existence in an art form predicated on perfection. This clothbound masterpiece is an homage to the gritty world behind the curtain. With impresario Lincoln Kirstein, George Balanchine co-created the New York City Ballet in 1948. What followed is arguably one the most revolutionary periods in ballet history as he redefined the art form, introducing abstract works performed with a signature speed, musicality and precision. Under the leadership of Peter Martins, these are the hallmarks of the Company to this day, and this book—with its candid, impressionistic action shots and exquisite use of color—serves as a beautiful tribute to the New York City Ballet's cultural and artistic presence. This new, slimmer edition of Ballet excludes the section of additional performance documentation.
Born in Switzerland in 1961, Henry Leutwyler moved to Paris in 1985, where he apprenticed with photographer Gilles Tapie and rapidly established himself as an editorial photographer. A decade later, he moved to New York City. Today, Leutwyler's celebrity portraits can be found in the pages of Vogue, Vanity Fair, The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Esquire Magazine and Time. He has photographed the likes of Michelle Obama, Julia Roberts, Tom Wolfe, Rihanna and Martin Scorsese, to name only a few. Leutwyler lives and works in downtown Manhattan.
Published by Steidl. Introduction by Peter Martins.
After four years of collaboration with choreographer Peter Martins and the New York City Ballet, Henry Leutwyler was granted unprecedented backstage access to the Company during the winter of 2012. The resulting book, Ballet, reflects 30 years of his passion for the art form, realized in 30 days of photographing. Leutwyler inhabited the shadows of the stage and became "invisible," recording images of the dancers using nothing more than his 35mm Leica. He was able to explore the performers' personal space, affording a more abstract portrait--a visual slice of their frenzied existence in an art form predicated on perfection. Ballet is an homage to the gritty universe from behind the curtain, and a complement to its ethereal beauty as viewed from the front row. With impresario Lincoln Kirstein, George Balanchine co-created the New York City Ballet in 1948. What followed is arguably one the most revolutionary periods in ballet history as he redefined the art form, introducing abstract works performed with a signature speed, musicality, and precision. Under the leadership of Peter Martins, these are the hallmarks of the Company to this day.