Social Graces: Slim Aarons’ Mid-Century Society Photographs
Slim Aarons is celebrated as one of the most influential photographers of his time. He once famously stated, “I have concentrated on photographing attractive people who were doing attractive things in attractive places.” Working for lifestyle magazines, he traveled the world taking pictures of the rich and famous at play. He favored sumptuous, rich Kodacolor to complement the colourful lives of his subjects. From the boulevards of Hollywood to the beaches of Italy, Slim was welcomed by the wealthy and privileged to their villas, mansions, swimming pools and yachts. It was a world of unprecedented luxury, power and beauty – and a party to which Slim was almost uniquely invited. Known for his positive portrayals, his presence at social gatherings became almost de rigeur.
The Getty Images Gallery, London’s largest independent photographic gallery, is the official home and estate of the entire Slim Aarons Archive. Our prints are produced utilizing the original transparencies and negatives housed at the Getty Images Archive. We specialize in hand printed photographs processed in our own darkrooms and offer premium prints including signed, estate stamped, and open edition photography.
Slim Aarons's photographs offer a glimpse into the lives of the American jet-set in the post-war era. Aarons photographed the rich and beautiful in palatial Malibu mansions, at society events, and on lush European beaches, winning the trust of celebrities and capturing the likes of Gary Cooper, Mick Jagger, and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis in private moments. His oeuvre evokes the glamour and grace of midcentury America, depicting what he often said were “attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places.” Aarons stopped working in the years leading up to his death, as he was displeased with the trends of magazine journalism that emerged in the 1990s and 2000s. His body of work represents an essential and iconic time-capsule of a bygone era.
American, 1916-2006, New York, New York