by Herb Ritts
Herb Ritts is among the foremost international fashion, celebrity and fine art photographers today: he is considered to be in the same league as Annie Liebowitz and Bruce Weber. His work is extensively published in Vanity Fair, Vogue, Interview, and Rolling Stone. The images created by Ritts have invaded pop culture. Compared with that of other international celebrity photographers, Ritts's work is arguably more sumptuous and less contrived. This large, handsomely self-covered book contains 120 beautifully reproduced duotone portraits (including three 8-page gatefolds) of a diversity of today's personalities, from Merce Cunningham to Magic Johnson, from Stephen Hawkins to Cher. Often, clothing makes the image: witness Michelle Pfieffer's Clark Gable get-up, Julia Roberts in wet men's underwear, Michael Jackson's hi-tech spacesuit, and, of course, a bare-breasted Madonna. Many of the shots are immediately recognizable because of their use in Vanity Fair, Interview, and Rolling Stone , magazines Ritts contributes to often. With the extraordinary talent on display in this latest work, Ritts has become as notable, if not notorious, as his subjects. Highly recommended for popular culture or photography collections.