Saul Leiter was one of the greatest undiscovered photographers of the 20th century. Working in New York as a fashion photographer, Saul Leiter amassed an amazing collection of personal work that came to the attention of Howard Greenberg in the 2000’s. Before Saul’s death – the release of “Early Color” changed Saul’s career finally bringing the attention and praise he long deserved.
Last year Greenberg/Steidl released a 2 volume book set called “Early Black and White”. Divided into 2 volumes (I. Interior and II. Exterior), the portfolio shows a much different side of Saul. The images are just as beautiful as the Early Color work, but they are made with a completely different approach. In some ways they could have been done by a completely different photographer, but there’s a hallmark of the style that is obviously classic Saul Leiter.
The impressive part is that Saul treated black and white vs color as 2 different mediums. Much like an artist who paints and sculpts, the respect for these 2 “mediums” speaks to Saul’s passion and respect for photography as well as his extraordinary talent as an artist.