From Publishers Weekly
Famous for his decadent photography, Newton shares his life and times in a tell-all that reveals as much about his narcissism as his artistry. A German Jew whose family was ruined by the Nazis, Newton, born in 1920, has lived an exciting and terrifying life. The product of a privileged Berlin childhood, he bought his first camera at 12 and was hooked. Apprenticed to Yva, a noted fashion photographer, Helmut learned his craft, all the while dreaming of becoming a photographer for Vogue. But once the Nuremberg Laws were passed, coupled with the horrors of Kristallnacht, his family fled. Young Helmut went to Singapore; his parents sailed to South America. This rupture forced him into an independent, nomadic existence that continued throughout his life. A handsome, dashing figure, he is honest about his tenure as a gigolo, his time in an Australian prison camp (holding an expired German passport meant he was considered an enemy alien), his years in the Australian army and his ongoing passion for photography. Proposing to his wife, June, he warned her: "My work will always come first." His big break came in 1961, when he joined French Vogue. Newton was renowned for his erotic, risqu shots of models and nudes recalling the racy cabarets of his youth. In 1976, he published White Women, a controversial book that established him as the agent provocateur of fashion photography. So distinct were Newton's images, they became a Vogue hallmark. His autobiography recounts everything from his numerous affairs to his artistic inspirations. It is a remarkably candid and revealing look at the man behind the camera.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A woman kneels on a bed wearing a saddle. An elegant nude leans on a cane, her neck in a surgical collar, one leg in a thigh-high cast. These are the sort of disturbing yet sexy images that made photographer Helmut Newton famous. The sultan of glossy erotica now tells his genuinely amazing and entertaining life story, decoding, along the way, the iconography of his stylishly risque oeuvre. The spoiled son of wealthy Berlin Jews, he was equally passionate about girls and photography, and lucky to escape Nazi Germany at age 18. He found refuge in Singapore, where he lived well as a gigolo, then was shipped to Australia, where he was drafted by the army and got married. Given his unabashed chronicling of carefree sexual exploits, his happy marriage and his wife's essential role in his work come as a pleasant surprise. Blunt about his sexuality, self-centeredness, and driving ambition, and generous in his chronicling of his radical approach to fashion photography, Newton is a beguiling and provocative autobiographer clearly grateful for his fabulous good fortune. Donna SeamanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved