A Dash of Daring: Carmel Snow and Her Life in Fashion, Art, and Letters

From The Atlantic Monthly:Daring

On a bleak October day in 1933, Martin Munkacsi, a prestigious Hungarian photojournalist who’d never before taken a fashion picture, was on Long Island’s Piping Rock Beach with a socialite model and Carmel Snow, the new fashion editrix of Harper’s Bazaar, who had hired him to shoot a feature for the magazine’s “Palm Beach” issue. Munkacsi, who would become one of the most successful photographers of his generation, ordered the shivering model in bathing suit and cloak to run toward the camera. The resulting snap revolutionized fashion photography. Until then, models were all but mannequins, elaborately and statically posed in the studios; from the Palm Beach issue forward, Bazaar had them diving, scaling sand dunes, jumping over puddles, scampering (naked) around swimming pools, and perched on camels. This was a new approach to fashion (one saw the clothes in action, as much as the models), and, in its effervescence and emphasis on physicality, it was a new approach to femininity.

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