Stoppers: Photographs from My Life at Vogue
In another case of expectation vs. reality, this reviewer is thrilled to write that the reality is far greater than the expectation. Let it be known that part of the tepid expectation was due to the title and the second was the unfamiliarity with the book’s author, let alone her oeuvre.
So first things first and that would be the title, Stoppers, which is defined early on in the text and in doing so clearly gives the book its premise and raison d’etre. “Stoppers” as defined by Alexander Liberman are the photos that cause a reader to pause and look carefully rather than just flip by them. Another aspect of this amazing book is that while the name Phyllis Posnick may not be on the tip of every fashionphile’s tongue, you can rest assured than every one of them has knowingly or unknowingly admired her work during the past 25 years
Stoppers has certainly pulled back the curtain on what goes into the creation of some of the most controversial, talked about, conceptual photographs ever to be published within the pages of Vogue. Posnick has not only defined her position, which was certainly new to this reviewer, but she has offered the perspective of each photographer concerning each image. She provides the reader with context and content as to what the process is when creating a single unforgettable image. She is hugely respected for her “eye” and skillset.
Without question the book is a visual stimulator on high as well as being informative. It should be read and studied to grasp the author’s position in the hierarchy of fashion as well as her intent when authoring this amazing work. For this reviewer, many images were unknown as Vogue has not been on my reading list for well over a decade, but that only increased the beauty and novelty of the images. What comes to mind is that every image is timeless no matter when originally published.
If you have one person on your holiday gift list who is of the “they have everything variety” and that person happens to be a fan of fashion or photography, this is definitely what they need!