Deconstructing Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow Up

Blow Up
Blow Up

Want to see a naked, nubile Jane Birkin in a threesome? Antonioni's film 1966 film Blow Up captured the zeitgeist of 1960s London with a bear trap. Its famous cover, with the lead character, a fashion photographer played by the venerable David Hemmings, lurching over the rail thin, German model Veruschka, is emblematic of an entire decade of cinema.  Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni, Blow Up, inspired by a book written by the Argentinian novelist Julio Cortázar, as well as the real life of iconic fashion photographer David Bailey, tells the the story of a fashion photographer who inadvertently stumbles into a murder.

jane_birkin_david_hemmings_antonioni_blow_up
jane_birkin_david_hemmings_antonioni_blow_up

The film, which stars David Hemmings, Vanessa Redgrave, and Sarah Miles, is a real-time paced glimpse into an otherwise drab London at the apex of the Swinging Sixties.  It was time when photographers were considered rock stars; groupies and all, doing whatever it takes to get their picture taken.  Using film stills and actual photographs in the film, a new book has come out this month on Steidl that re-examines Blow Up in a retrospective, socio-cultural context. Antonioni's Blow-Up, as the book is called, by Philippe Garner and David Alan, promises a "fresh and stimulating study of Antonioni’s masterpiece."

veruschka_david_hemmings_antonioni_blow_up
veruschka_david_hemmings_antonioni_blow_up

You can find the book on Colette's e-shop. www.colette.fr