Michals grew up in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, and currently lives in New York City. Michals has been in a relationship with his partner, architect and vice president of Gramercy Neighborhood Associates Frederick Gorree, since 1960.
Michals's interest in art "began at age 14 while attending watercolor university classes at the Carnegie Institute [Carnegie Museum of Art] in Pittsburgh." In 1953 he received a B.A. from the University of Denver. After two years in the Army, in 1956 he went on to study at the Parsons School of Design with a plan to becoming a graphic designer; however, he did not complete his studies.
He describes his photographic skills as "completely self-taught." In 1958 while on a holiday in the USSR he discovered an interest in photography. The photographs he made during this trip became his first exhibition held in 1963 at the Underground Gallery in New York City.
For a number of years, Michals was a commercial photographer, working for Esquire and Mademoiselle, and he covered the filming of The Great Gatsby for Vogue (1974). He did not have a studio. Instead, he took portraits of people in their environment, which was a contrast to the method of other photographers at the time, such as Avedon and Irving Penn.
The Most Beautiful Part of a Man's Body, 1986
Duane Michals (born February 18, 1932) is an American photographer. Michals's work makes innovative use of photo-sequences, often incorporating text to examine emotion and philosophy. Michals grew up in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, and currently lives in NYC. Michals has been in a relationship with his partner, architect and vice president of Gramercy Neighborhood Associates Frederick Gorree, since 1960. Though he has not been involved in gay civil rights, his photography has addressed gay themes.
The Most Beautiful Part of a Woman's Body, 1986
All Things Mellow in the Mind, 1986
Dr. Heisenberg's Magic Mirror of Uncertainty, 1998
Magritte with Hat, 1965
Collage Portrait of Rauschenberg in His Studio, 1962
A Man Dreaming in the City, 1969
A Woman Dreaming in the City, 1968
The Young Girl's Dream, 1969
Inappropriate Desire, 1986
David Hockney with Friend, 1975
The Price of Pleasure, 2003-05
Balthus and Setsuko, 2000
There Are Things Here Not Seen in This Photograph, 1977
Black is Ugly, 1974
Joseph Cornell, 1972
The Fallen Angel, 1968
Rene Magritte (Profile and Full Face), 1965
Dr. Duanus' Famous Magic Act, 1996
Now Becoming Then, 1978
The Kentucky Kid, 2001
Certain Words Must Be Said, 1976
Magritte Asleep, 1965
The Universe of Universes, 1998
Many Moons, 1989
Rene & Georgette Magritte Holding Hands Behind a Tree, 1965
Paul Cadmus, August 4, 1992
Nude Observed, 1968
The Vanity of Animals, 2004
Now That I Am Old, 2005
Alone at Midnight, September 27, 2005
Fireworks Above, Rainbow Lightening, September 19, 2005
The Courtesan Was Shocked, September 10, 2005
Masculine Beauty, Feminine Beauty, September 20, 2005
In the Darkness of Dusk, October 22, 2005
An Unexpected Gift, August 2, 2005
The Frog Sits and Meditates All Day, September 16, 2005
The Last Rose of Summer, September 11, 2005
Michals was hired by the government of Mexico to photograph the 1968 Summer Olympics. In 1970 his works were shown at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The portraits he took between 1958 and 1988 would later become the basis of his book, Album.
In 1976 Michals received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Michals also produced the art for the album Synchronicity (by The Police) in 1983, and Richard Barone's Clouds Over Eden album in 1993.
Though he has not been involved in gay civil rights, his photography has addressed gay themes. Michals cites Balthus, William Blake, Lewis Carroll, Thomas Eakins, René Magritte, and Walt Whitman as influences on his art. In turn, he has influenced photographers such as David Levinthal and Francesca Woodman.
He is noted for two innovations in artistic photography developed in the 1960s and 1970s. First, he "[told] a story through a series of photos" as in his 1970 book Sequences. Second, he handwrote text near his photographs, thereby giving information that the image itself could not convey.
Duane Michals (Photofile) introduction by Renaud Camus
Paperback: 144 pages
Publisher: Thames & Hudson (April 27, 2009)
Amazon: Duane Michals
The classic Photofile series brings together the best work of the world's greatest photographers in an attractive format and at a reasonable price.
Handsome and collectible, the books are produced to the highest standards. Each volume contains reproductions printed in superb duotone, together with a critical introduction and a full bibliography.
Born in 1932 in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, Duane Michals has become best known for his compelling narrative sequences, including "The Voyage of the Spirit After Death," "Paradise Regained," and "The Fallen Angel." His work reflects a haunting obsession with life and death, fantasy and reality - thematic opposites expressed through his use of double exposures, superimposed images, props, mirrors, and the ambiguous notations that often appear on the margins of the photographs. 147 duotone photographs
More Photographers at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
More Real Life Romances at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance
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