Guy Bourdin (9 May – 4 July 2009)

Unseen was the first exhibition of 32 photographs by Guy Bourdin. Considered  as one of the most provocative fashion photographers the twentieth century, Bourdin (1928 – 1991) unremittingly sought perfection. His brilliant, intense narrative images continue to tantalise, disturb and inspire.

His influence on contemporary fashion photography is inescapable, but many photographers who reference his work overlook the essential surrealist nature of his pictures distracted by the erotic tension of his images. Despite the extraordinary aesthetic and technical innovation of Bourdin’s work, the photographer had never showed his images other than in the commercial context for which they were commissioned – magazines and advertising campaigns. The images exhibited in Unseen therefore offered a fresh perspective of his work