Those are lovely and I'm glad the artist has salvaged her work, but I don't find her view of womanhood entirely admirable.
I'm decades younger than she are and for me, the social and cultural movements of the late 60s lifted stifling constrictions on women, including "armour" undergarments, deep inequality and many many other restraints. The "costume" was just a fad, but the impact has been lasting. No going back to a time when psychotherapy's aim is to convince doubting women to procreate like everyone else.
I found this comment insightful: 12. joannchartier Oregon July 17th, 2009 11:30 am Though she has 30 years on me, I too still work in my studio nearly every day pushing the boundaries of my art -- and THAT is what the "sexual revolution' of the 60s gave me -- not the hippie dippie excess of teenagers but the OPPORTUNITY to do my work my way. Bassman appears here as a woman who thinks, and stands on her own to present her picture of "femininity" for the rest of us to absorb. Thanks for the article but please expand your own vision of women and their work.
Some of the other commentors went overboard and don't allow for the exploration of beauty (male or female) in their feminist outlook - pity, that - but Joann Chartier, who is of my cohort, expressed the deep malaise this story makes me feel.
I have to disagree with the views of Lillian Bassman presented in Reply #3.
Based on the article, at least, she left fashion photography not because she objected to the changes of the times, but to the personality cult of the models.
This was a woman who made a career in what was a man's world when she started out. She took the commercial projects she was given and managed to make them into art. If you go to page one of the article and look at the image that starts the slide show -- the one of the woman's head reflected in the mirror -- it's obvious that any of her work can be viewed as photography for photography's sake. So, her feeling that the models of the mid-sixties were dictatorial prima donnas would preclude her using them strictly as artists' models, as she'd been doing earlier.
To have her abandoned work fetched forth by a fellow artist and to look at it again and see the artistic value there hardly brands her as a woman with a constricted view of femininity.
I find the comment by Joanne Chartier arrogant and short-sighted. Her harsh judgment of Ms. Bassman and parallel smug vision of herself as emancipated from the past displays a certain ignorance of 20th century history.