Today marks the 75th anniversary of LIFE magazine being in print, and as such they have a couple of great “Best-of” lists going on at their website. Whenever I think of LIFE it is inevitably the iconic photographs that have been produced in it's tenure that come to mind. Lucky for you their website has created a list of the top 75 photographs from the past 75 years. 75!!!!!!
In honor of this grand achievement I thought it would be fun to cull from The John Cleary Gallery’s very own collection of LIFE photographs, some of which are found on the best-of list. In the instances where there is an overlap, I have copied the blurb provided on LIFE’s website.
Alfred Eisenstaedt: Three Frames of Children at Puppet Theater, Paris, 1963
“Yes, LIFE's photographers took many classic images of the powerful, the rich, and the famous -- but Alfred Eisenstaedt's gift was making stars out of everyday people, by patiently observing and capturing them in magical moments of joy and wonder. Here, he trains his eye on a young audience at a puppet show in a Paris park: Each delightful child reacts in an extreme and distinct way to the moment when St. George slays the dragon, displaying a range of emotions -- amusement, horror, triumph, fear -- that hints at the many facets of the human experience.”
Margaret Bourke-White: American Woolen Co., Lawrence, MA, 1935
Philippe Halsman: Edward Steichen, 1959
John Dominis: Mickey Mantel having a bad day at Yankee Stadium, 1965
“In perhaps the greatest-ever photograph of a legendary athlete in decline, John Dominis captured New York center fielder Mickey Mantle at Yankee Stadium in June 1965, at a point in his career when alcohol, injuries, and plain old advancing age were dulling the incandescent talents of the future Hall of Famer. Here, in Dominis' photo, Mantle flings his batting helmet away in frustration after a terrible at-bat -- a gesture that, even in the twilight of his career, Mantle managed with physical grace and, somehow, a kind of flair.”
Yousuf Karsh: Joan Miro
Gordon Parks: American Gothic, 1942
John Loengard: The Beatles, Miami Beach, 1964
“In John Loengard's popular photo of John, Paul, George, and Ringo, taken during their first trip to America, the lads' famous mop tops bob undisturbed above the water's surface. The pool was quite chilly that day, thanks to a cold snap -- check out Ringo's grimace -- and Loengard has said the Beatles even began to turn blue; still, in the short minutes he had to get this shot, the photographer cleverly asked the boys to sing, and thus managed to draw out the playfulness and passion that made them so beloved.”
Ralph Morse: Frank Gehry “Testing” His Furniture Design, NYC, 1970 (Some of you may remember a stairway design by Frank Gehry from a post on stairs—yes, a whole post on stairs—from a little over a year ago!)
Carl Mydans: Dancing at Rosie’s Café, Texas, 1937… because why not end with a shout-out to my home country!!
Artist: Barbra Streisand / Album: Love is the Answer