Peter Lindbergh

He became famous as a photographer only at the age of 43. But by 74, he had achieved absolute influence. He was adored by supermodels and editors of glossy magazines, although he was against the smooth retouched image. On September 3, 2019 he passed away.

Peter Lindbergh is a German photographer, one of the most outstanding in the fashion industry. He is known with creating the supermodels phenomena of the 1990s. Winner of numerous awards, Knight of the Order of the Arts and the Letters. He created the Pirelli Calendar three times: in 1996, in 2002 and in 2014. The last calendar was in collaboration with Patrick Demarchelier.
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"This should be the responsibility of photographers today to free women, and finally everyone, from the terror of youth and perfection."
- Peter Lindbergh

Peter Lindbergh was born in 1944 in Lissa (Leszno), Poland. He was the third child in the family. At 14 Peter left school to start working as a window dresser for the local department store. Then he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin at 18, but soon decided to follow in the footsteps of his idol, Vincent van Gogh and go to Arles. Peter worked on the farm in the mornings and painted in the evenings, selling his work in the markets.

Later he continued hitchhiking around Europe and North Africa.
"I was about 20. I was lost to society: smoking pot, sleeping outside. Two years on the road is long. That is a lot of time to think. It made me a different man" -Lindbergh recalls those times.

Lindbergh discovered photography by an accident. His brother's children delighted him so much that Peter wanted to photograph them, and that was when he got his first camera. In 1971 he worked as photographer assistant, and in 1973 he opened his own studio in Düsseldorf. Lindbergh shot the first advertising campaign for VW Golf, and a fashion photoshoot for the prestigious Stern magazine. In 1978, Peter moved to Paris and began publishing in Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone.
Following his own style, Peter Lindbergh was capturing supermodels and celebrities with almost no makeup and no hair styling. He finds power and poetry in imperfection. The models' faces look untouched by makeup or any other such an artifice. Perhaps that is why neither time nor fashion has power over his portraits. The photographer's distinctive feature is black-and-white photography, although sometimes Lindbergh was shooting in color.
«I'm not retouching anything. "Oh, but she looks tired," they say. And then what if she looks tired? Tired and beautiful!» - This phrase perfectly describes the style and philosophy of the photographer.
Lindbergh's latest photographs are mirrors of life. Describing his work, American Photo Magazine has said: "The most important quality in Peter Lindbergh's fashion photography is a forthright, almost shocking honesty. His models seem to open themselves emotionally to his camera. Amid the artifice, they seem real."
The photographer's team posts actively on his Instagram. The number of his subscribers has already exceeded 1.5 million.
We have collected the most outstanding Vogue's covers made by Peter Lindbergh.
Author Anna Laza
Peter Lindbergh Instagram
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