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Saul Leiter

The Centennial Retrospective

Margit Erb, Michael Parillo, Michael Greenberg, Adam Harrison Levy, Lou Stoppard, Asa Hiramatsu


Celebrating the centennial of Saul Leiter’s birth, the official retrospective of a revolutionary figure in twentieth-century photography

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Saul Leiter photographed and painted nearly every day for over sixty years, amassing an enormous archive, most of which remained unseen during his lifetime. Finding inspiration within a few blocks of his apartment in Lower Manhattan, he was a master at discovering beauty in the most ordinary places. Celebrated today for his evocative colour photographs of New York in the 1950s and 1960s, which were unknown in their day, Leiter also found success as a fashion photographer for Harper’s Bazaar. All the while he was shooting black-and-white street scenes on his daily walks, and nudes and intimate portraits back home, while continuing his painting explorations with abstract watercolours, whimsical sketchbooks and painted photographs.

Created in collaboration with the Saul Leiter Foundation, this definitive monograph brings together these diverse yet interconnected bodies of work – including much that was previously unpublished – to reveal the complete artist for the first time.

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'Highlights the beauty to be found in stillness. Leiter’s painterly pictures are deeply affecting, reminding us of hidden worlds that exist in the mundane'

'In the year the playful yet famously preceptive photographer would have turned 100, enter his enigmatic world via … The Centennial Retrospective'
Harper's Bazaar

'To mark the centenary of one of the giants of 20th-century photography, this comprehensive monograph brings together the many strands of his work. Will appeal to anyone with an interest in photography'
Black & White Photography

'I have adored and studied Saul Leiter's work for many years ... This book, however, made me see it in a whole new light. A phenomenal read'
Digital Camera World

'A retrospective that, if you’ve never bought anything of Leiter’s before, should be top of your list. Whether you’re interested in Americana, fashion, street photography, colour work or how somebody so consistently works throughout a long career and life, this is a wonderful addition to any photography enthusiast's bookshelf'
Amateur Photographer

'Leiter’s New York is an intimately observed world of gesture and detail: luminous, otherworldly, and oddly tranquil. Streets and buildings are bathed in soft light and warm colours, his use of reflections, blur and shadow approaching the abstract or dreamlike ... He captured the city and its people in all seasons, against brightly painted storefronts in summer sunlight, and enveloped in snow or partially obscured by rain in the harsh New York winter. Often, his subjects are caught in moments of quiet reverie amid, but apart from, the city’s bustle and hum'

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback

Size: 30.5 x 25.4 cm

Extent: 352 pp

Illustrations: 340

Publication date: 26 October 2023

ISBN: 9780500545577

About the Author

Margit Erb is the founder and director of the Saul Leiter Foundation.
Michael Parillo is the associate director of the Saul Leiter Foundation.