Norman Parkinson (1913 London – 1990 Singapore) was one of the most prominent fashion photographers of the 20th century. For over 50 years he worked as a photographer and was renowned for his unconventionally plain yet elegant style of fashion photography.
He began his career in 1931 as an apprentice to the court photographers Speight and Sons Ltd. Some years later he opened his own studio together with Norman Kibblewhite in Piccadilly, London, and then from 1935 to 1949 he worked for Harper’s Bazaar. His photographs of celebrities, artists, the royal family, musicians, politicians and actors have become icons of the 20th century photography. During the Second World War he served as a reconnaissance photographer over France for the Royal Air Force.
In the course of his long career, spanning seven decades, he dazzled the world with his inventiveness and creativity. Parkinson’s approach was playful and dynamic, he took fashion photography out of the studio and into to the streets. This was a revolutionary approach as fashion photography at the time was mainly studio photography. He gained worldwide recognition for his assignments for Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and the Queens Magazine. With each new decade the photographer reinvented himself – from the 30’s through to the 80’s. In his honour a huge retrospective of his work was shown at the National Gallery in London.
Bernheimer Fine Art Photography has exhibited his work at numerous group exhibitions and art fairs.