When it came to fashion photography, Frank Horvat was among the best in the world. His artful photographs reshaped our understanding of the fashion industry and contributed to the medium’s ascent to the level of fine art.
Starting on February 3 and continuing through April 30 in Wetzlar, Germany’s Leica Galerie Wetzlar will be showcasing his most recent works as part of a solo exhibition. As he would instruct his subjects before taking their portraits, the show is titled Please Don’t Smile.
The photographer had a 70-year career, and this exhibition focuses on his fashion work. Famously saying, “Without stories to tell, fashion would never have really interested me,” he demonstrated that fashion photography could be used for more than just promoting handbags.
Horvat’s photographs of the fashion industry have appeared in magazines such as Vogue, Elle, and Harper’s Bazaar. He settled in Paris and shot the city in all its romantic majesty, from foggy night scenes to unusual angles of the Eiffel Tower.
His friend and fellow photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson is credited with introducing him to the Leica brand (who now has his own namesake museum in Paris).