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  • Writer's pictureIan Miller

Horst P Horst

Horst P Horst was one of the most influential photographers of the 20th century. He is best known for his elegant and glamorous portraits of celebrities, models, artists and royalty. He also captured the essence of fashion, architecture, interiors and still life with his distinctive style and lighting.


Horst was born in Germany in 1906 and studied art and design in Hamburg and Paris. He became an apprentice to the French photographer Le Corbusier in 1930 and soon developed his own aesthetic. He was fascinated by classical forms and geometric shapes, as well as by the contrast between light and shadow. He used these elements to create dramatic and sophisticated images that often had a surreal or mysterious quality.


Horst worked for Vogue magazine for over six decades, from 1931 to 1991. He photographed some of the most famous and influential people of his time, such as Coco Chanel, Marlene Dietrich, Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol and Madonna. He also documented the changing trends and styles of fashion, from the elegance of the 1930s to the glamour of the 1950s to the avant-garde of the 1980s. He was a master of composition and colour, using props, backgrounds and accessories to enhance his subjects and create a mood.


Horst also explored other genres of photography, such as architecture, interiors and still life. He travelled extensively and photographed various cultures and landscapes around the world. He had a keen eye for detail and beauty, whether it was a flower, a sculpture or a building. He also experimented with different techniques and formats, such as solarization, collage and polaroid.


Horst died in 1999 at the age of 93. He left behind a legacy of over 60,000 photographs that are widely admired and exhibited today. He is regarded as one of the greatest photographers of all time and an icon of style and elegance.

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