Avedon Baldwin

A Black and Paper Christmas Recommendation

Legendary talents of the 20th century, high school friends Photographer Richard Avedon and Activist writer James Baldwin works are the subject of a newly reprinted book, Avedon Baldwin NOTHING PERSONAL.  Avedon was known for his glamorous images of models and superstars appearing in glossy magazines.  Writer Baldwin’s pointed critiques of social injustices of American Society made him leading figure of the Civil Rights Movement.

Avedon Baldwin’s NOTHING PERSONAL was first printed in 1964, a collaboration between focusing on the raw, unfiltered side of American life.  Pointing the camera lens at subjects including Neo Nazis, Ginsberg, and Malcolm X, Avedon captures gritty images of a civilization without top down censors.  Baldwin narrates the book with personal essays on his experiences in a place where skin color defines every form of a person’s existence.

As an Avedon and Baldwin fan, I had no idea about this book.  My image of Avedon has always been glamorous shots of Audrey Hepburn alongside his Vogue covers.  I thought of Baldwin as the confrontational yet eloquent social commentator for the oppressed.  Two great artists, one with images, the other with words, that are relevant today.

Out of print for many years; this controversial publication is inspiring as it is timely.   

Richard Avedon, Alec Baldwin NOTHING PERSONAL is available in Bookstores.