New Found Images | The Way They Were

John Kennedy Jr. + Jackie Kennedy Onassis (1978)

Eugene “Gene” Spatz (1943-2003) was a pioneer of the paparazzi movement in America. Coined by the film director, Federico Fellini, in his seminal work La Dolce Vita, the term “paparazzo” is often believed to be a corruption of the Italian word for a large and bothersome mosquito, but Spatz was decidedly more engaging and less confrontational than most of his peers. A keen observer from a very young age, he wielded his camera to give us captivating insight into the fabulous lives of New York, Hollywood and other celebrities during the 1970s and 80s. At the same time, Spatz had a clear eye and a deep concern for the lives of ordinary people, and captured images of them on the street that are in sharp contrast to celebrity life.  Instead of being swatted away like other paparazzi, Spatz patiently inched closer and closer to get the perfect shot.  Now we reap the benefits in Spatz’s enthralling collection of new found images on POBA.

Spatz’s roster of celebrity images also included some mystery personages –  images of particularly striking individuals who were unnamed and, to us, remain unknown.  From time to time, POBA will be asking for your help in finding out who these individuals are.  We start with this grand woman, Elegant at Any Age.