The photographs of Helmut Newton are well known. His name immediately conjures up images for many a photography enthusiast, namely those of longleed, high-heeled – and usually scantily clad – women, who radiate an unbridled sense of eroticism. But not all who are familiar with his photos know what Newton himself looked like. Nor do they know his wife, Alice Springs, a well-known photographer in her own right. Or who has ever seen the unvarnished Cindy Sherman behind all her masks? And who is familiar with the man behind the creepy pictures of Roger Ballen?
Luckily for those who love photographs and are curious about who took them, Volker Hinz, a staff photographer for almost for years of the German weekly magazine Stern, made portraits of some of the greats whose pictures are unforgettable. Volker’s sense of humour and the loving embrace of his peers make these portraits both pleasurable and informative.
In 2015 he published a book with the telling title “In Love With Photography“, in which over 170 of the most well known photographers appear, among them names like André Kertéz, Robert Mapplethorpe, Duane Michaels, Elliot Erwitt , Annie Leibowitz, Peter Lindbergh, Sebastião Salgdo, Richard Avedon and many more.
Theses pictures are more than simple portraits. They tell all about the wit and the engagement, with which Volker Hinz approaches his fellow photographers. Always with a twinkle in his eyes, he knows how to convince his colleges for a pose or to steal an unobserved moment. Martin Parr wrote: “I had no idea that you shot me“ and Alice Springs asked in astonishment: “When did you got Helmut with the high-heels? I cannot
remember!“ Although his wife is standing behind a hedge, shooting the scene herself with her own camera. Apparently Volker Hinz can make himself so invisible that even the fairly loud click of his Hasselblad camera does not disturb his objects.
Volker Hinz never makes much of a distinction between pictures he takes on assignment, and pictures he takes for his own pleasure. Never without a camera, he is equally enthusiastic about a photo-story he is pursing for a magazine and an alluring image he might come across as he is walking back to his hotel room after the shoot.
Volker Hinz is a flaneur of the moment in the best sense of the word. He is always hunting for the unexpected. He especially likes to mingle with the crowd at photo conventions or gallery openings to take his pictures when nobody expects it. Just no premature eye contact. “Stolen moments“, he calls this perspective. “I am a one-picture photographer“, and the hit rate is remarkable. When asked how he selects his objects, he admits that he photographs only those colleagues whose work he respects.
His work is published in many international magazines like
GEO, New York Magazine, Vani Fair, New Yorker, Photo or Paris Match. World Press and Art Directors Club Germany repeatedly awarded the projects of Volker Hinz. His photographs were part of many national and international shows and can be found in private collections and museums.