Famed photographer Annie Leibovitz weighs in with her own SUMO
When Benedikt Taschen asked the most important portrait photographer working today
to collect her pictures in a SUMO-sized book, she was intrigued and challenged. The
project took several years to develop and proved to be revelatory. Leibovitz drew
from over 40 years of work, starting with the viscerally intimate reportage she created
for Rolling Stone magazine in the 1970s and extending through the more stylized portraiture
of her work for Vanity Fair and Vogue. Celebrated images such as John and Yoko entwined
in a last embrace are printed alongside portraits that have rarely, and sometimes
never before, been seen. Leibovitz was able to present some of her famous group portraits
in a format that proves that she is the master of the genre. Her pictures are at
once intimate and iconic, wide-ranging stylistically and also uniquely hers. Leibovitz
is often imitated, particularly by younger photographers, but her work is somehow
The bookends of the Leibovitz collection are the black-and-white photograph of Richard
Nixon’s helicopter lifting off from the White House lawn after he resigned as president
in 1974 and the formal color portrait of Queen Elizabeth II taken in a drawing room
of Buckingham Palace in 2007. In between are portraits that make up a family album
of our time: actors, dancers, comedians, musicians, artists, writers, performance
artists, journalists, athletes, businesspeople. Performance and power are recurring
themes. A supplementary book contains essays by Annie Leibovitz, Graydon Carter,
Paul Roth, and Hans Ulrich Obrist and short texts describing the subjects of each
of the over 250 photographs.
The Collector’s Edition is available in four different dust jackets:
Whoopi Goldberg, Berkeley, California, 1984
Keith Haring, New York City, 1986
David Byrne, Los Angeles, 1986
Patti Smith, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1978
Limited to a total of 10,000 signed and numbered copies, this book is available as
Collector’s Edition (No. 1,001–10,000)
Hardcover with 8 fold-outs, 50 x 69 cm (19,7 x 27,2 in.), 476 pages, supplement book,
and bookstand designed by Marc Newson
and also as
Art Edition No. 1–1,000 with a fine art print by Annie Leibovitz.
The Art Edition is presented with the full set of all four dust jackets.50 x 69 cm,
476 pagesAnnie Leibovitz,
Archival pigment print, 20 x 20 in., tripod bookstand designed by Marc Newson,
leather-bound hardcover volume with 8 fold-outs, 19.7 x 27.2 in., 476 pages, set
of 4 dust jacke
Both editions will be presented with a book stand designed by Marc Newson.
Annie Leibovitz has been a working photographer for 40 years. She was the chief photographer
for Rolling Stone and then the first contributing photographer for the revived Vanity
Fair. In addition to her editorial work at Vanity Fair, and later at Vogue, she has
created several award-winning advertising campaigns. She has been designated a Living
Legend by the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Steve Martin is a celebrated comedian, actor, writer, and musician. In 2010, he published
the novel An Object of Beauty.
Graydon Carter has been the editor of Vanity Fair since 1992.
Hans Ulrich Obrist is the co-director of exhibitions and programmes and director
of international projects at the Serpentine Gallery in London.
Paul Roth is the director of the Ryerson Image Centre in Toronto.