Arnold Newman’s ‘Alfred Krupp’
One of the most iconic images of the last 50 years is Arnold image of Alfred Krupp’s. For me it is exposes the industrialist to the power of our critical gaze for his control and exploitation of people – his was a convicted Nazi war criminal.
Armaments manufacturer Alfred Krupp who alledgedly used slave labour to make weapons for the Nazis, contacted the famous Newman for a portrait in 1963. Upon finding out that Newman was a Jew, Krupp refused to let him make the photograph. Newman insisted to have Krupp look at his portfolio before making a final decision and after seeing Newman’s portfolio Krupp accepted. So on July 6, 1963, the industrialist and the auteur went into a delict factory in Essen which belonged to Krupp, where Newman decided to make Krupp look as evil as possible under the eerie demonic lighting of the factory. (Selwyn-Holmes, A. 2009).
When Krupp first saw the portrait he was livid. Newman was more tongue-in-cheek: “As a Jew, it’s my own little moment of revenge.” In a short video he talks about talks about “putting a knife in his back,” in the sitting and portrait (Unknown. 2011). I think that this is legitimate theoretical standpoint; and expression of marxist theory of using art to expose power relations and abuse.
Selwyn-Holmes, A. (2009). Alfred Krupp. Iconic Photos. iconicphotos.wordpress.com, WordPress. 2016.
Unknown (2011). Arnold Newman talks about taking Krupps portrait. youtube.com, Nepentanova https://www.youtube.com/watch?