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White Women [Paperback]

Helmut Newton
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sept. 10 2001
White Women, Helmut Newton's legendary first work, appeared more than twenty years ago. With it's superior mixture of aesthetics, technical perfection and bourgeois decadence it has lost nothing of its potency and attractiveness. Newton's work encompasses a wealth of themes, also embodying facets of the mass-media world of glamour, masquerade and show. Using subtle, yet striking images--like those of Paloma Picasso, Veruschka, Elsa Peretti, Karl Lagerfeld, David Hockney, and Charlotte Rampling--Newton embraces the delicate, natural beauty of the naked female body. White Women is a masterpiece of erotic visual literature.

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Product Description

From the Inside Flap

White Women was and still is the legendary first book by Helmut Newton, published in 1976. His inimitable blend of aestheticism, technical perfection and luxurious upper-middle-class decadence is today just as appealing and controversial as it was thirty-three years ago. White Women is a delicacy in visual erotic literature that connoisseurs and people in the know still consider to be Newton's best book ever. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
3.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extreme Fashion Fantasies Involving Available Women March 13 2001
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Before reviewing this book, let me point out that it contains much female nudity in sexual situations that are sometimes on the hard side of what would be rated "R" in a motion picture.
This book is a reissue of Helmut Newton's first book from the 1970s. The shock value of that work continues in this very well produced volume with images of high reproduction quality featuring carefully posed compositions involving sumptuous fashion and beautiful models.
The introduction captures the spirit of the book. "It is the visual inventiveness that make the images memorable." Newton peels away respectability from the outer aura of powerful, well-dressed women to show their carnal natures. For example, in one of the first images, he shows a woman wearing a beautiful dress, who is perfectly coiffed. But the dress is totally see-through. She wears it as though it is totally opaque.
He expresses these personal visions in his own language in brief paragraphs and through the visual images that often suggest a taste for some "rough sexual trade" through the use of props and body positions.
The settings in the book are mostly at the Villa D'Este on Lake Como in northern Italy, in or around swimming pools on the French Riviera, in powerful cars and limousines, on public streets and in public places, and in hotel rooms and bedrooms.
The photographs are all reproduced here in large size with virtually flawless technical details of composition, lighting, and exposure. I have seen many of these images reproduced elsewhere (including the recent retrospective, Helmut Newton Work), but not as well as they are done here.
Through the combination of the text, notes, and large size photographs, you can appreciate more of his subtle work here than elsewhere.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For the title! July 26 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I have not read this book, but am responding to the previous reviewer who gave this book one star on the basis of its title. Who cares if it only has "white" women in it, hence the title. Since when did the idea of anti-discrimination become a tyrannical strangle-hold on an artist's freedom? Get a grip, or actually, loosen up, is probably more to the point. You are not making anyone "think", just annoying other people. The absolute lack of helpfulness of your review to other people proves this point nicely!
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1 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Separate But Equal? Nov. 24 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Why is this book titled "White Women"? Does he have books titled "Asian Women", "Black Women" or "Latino Women"? Why didn't he just make a book titled "Women"? It is interesting that he likes to "color code" his women.
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Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
112 of 115 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extreme Fashion Fantasies Involving Available Women March 13 2001
By Donald Mitchell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Before reviewing this book, let me point out that it contains much female nudity in sexual situations that are sometimes on the hard side of what would be rated "R" in a motion picture.
This book is a reissue of Helmut Newton's first book from the 1970s. The shock value of that work continues in this very well produced volume with images of high reproduction quality featuring carefully posed compositions involving sumptuous fashion and beautiful models.
The introduction captures the spirit of the book. "It is the visual inventiveness that make the images memorable." Newton peels away respectability from the outer aura of powerful, well-dressed women to show their carnal natures. For example, in one of the first images, he shows a woman wearing a beautiful dress, who is perfectly coiffed. But the dress is totally see-through. She wears it as though it is totally opaque.
He expresses these personal visions in his own language in brief paragraphs and through the visual images that often suggest a taste for some "rough sexual trade" through the use of props and body positions.
The settings in the book are mostly at the Villa D'Este on Lake Como in northern Italy, in or around swimming pools on the French Riviera, in powerful cars and limousines, on public streets and in public places, and in hotel rooms and bedrooms.
The photographs are all reproduced here in large size with virtually flawless technical details of composition, lighting, and exposure. I have seen many of these images reproduced elsewhere (including the recent retrospective, Helmut Newton Work), but not as well as they are done here.
Through the combination of the text, notes, and large size photographs, you can appreciate more of his subtle work here than elsewhere. At his best, fashion, celebrity, and exposure are intertwined in almost inseparable ways. For example, Paloma Picasso appears wearing her own jewelry in a dress by Karl Langerfeld (who is seen on the facing page wearing a similar outfit) from which one shoulder has been peeled away to reveal her left breast, which in turn is artfully obscured behind her left arm. In a famous Newton image on the rue Aubriot in Paris in 1975, one mannish-appearing model sports a suit by St. Laurent in close proximity to a nude model wearing a chapeau by Paulette. The two and the street scene serve to focus attention unerringly on the contrast in clothing and on the clothes themselves. Nicely done!
As fine as this book is, I graded the book down one star because many of the photographs fall far below the best in the book. Many of the nudes in and around the swimming pool and in the cars were pretty ordinary, in my estimation. It would have been better to create a shorter version of the book that maintained the high standard of the best fashion work.
My favorite images in the book include:
Villa D'Este (Woman with riding crop), April 1975 (p. 9)
Elsa Peretti in Halston's bunny costume, New York, November 1975 (p. 15)
Winnie off the coast of Cannes, 1975 (p. 32)
Lisa in Saint-Tropez, 1975 (p. 34)
Peter in Saint-Tropez, 1975 (same day) (p. 35)
Photographed in Saint-Tropez, June 1975 (p. 46)
Charlotte Rampling, Arles, France, 1973 (p. 89)
My favorite quote in the book is from Mr. Newton's father, "My boy, you'll end up in the gutter."
After you examine these photographs, I encourage you to think about the ways we reduce our communication by keeping a placid, masked exterior to the world. How much more could we accomplish if we were more open? What are the best ways to express that openness?
Look deeply to see the human reality and honesty in every moment!
25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars White Women Indeed Oct. 11 2004
By Ryan A. Gunter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
The late Helmut Newton, who died in a car crash this year, was a premier fashion photographer whose blatantly sexual images graced the pages of glossy fashion magazines around the world. Newton's sexually charged pictures were laden with beautiful women caught in dangerous situations. He was the master of the "fashion narrative", meaning Newton's photographs usually told a dark story, leaving much to the imagination, unlike today's lensmen who simply shoot models against white backgrounds. Every single element in a Newton photograph was part of a story, from the half-filled glass of whiskey to the newspaper folded neatly on the table to the man in dark shades standing in the background. Viewers were invited to peek into the world of Newton's naughty aristocrats, wondering just what the next frame would reveal. The reference to "White Women" in the title was not racist. Newton has often said that he found pale, cold skin alluring, even using certain filters to get this effect. Over the course of his career, Helmut Newton has photographed Iman, Naomi Campell, Grace Jones and many other women of color. I think it's sad indeed that people choose to use every oppurtunity to factor race into something as simple as a book title. I am black and won't let the title "White Women" deter me from enjoying this great photographer's work.
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unsurpassed Quality May 15 2011
By Sammy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I do a lot of glamour photography, and I have a pretty good collection of "inspiration" books. I've put a lot of thought and effort into it. Purchased and returned many; kept the few that are great. This is one of the great ones. It is very oversize and made of high quality material. The photographs are no less than inspiring. Beautiful women, no question about it. And, the best part is that Newton's thoughts on the images and why/how he took them the way he did are included. What a great reference for a photographer, to learn from the master. Very highly recommended. P.S. I have not seen any of the other Newton books. All I know is that they are expensive!
4.0 out of 5 stars Helmut , the original. Jan. 13 2013
By James Clark - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I was hoping for some tips on how to get such shots, but I guess the compositions speak for themsrlves.
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book of Beautiful Women Nov. 13 2012
By P. Scibilia - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
When I ordered this book I had a feeling that it would be good, but I didn't know it would be REALLY GOOD. Sharp pictures that are composed very well with gorgeous models. This book was published in the seventies, but has a very current feeling to it . A must for anyone that collects erotic photo essays.
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