Bill Cunningham, the man accredited with popularising the genre of 'street style photography', passed away on Saturday at 87 years old. Cunningham had worked at the New York Times since 1970. The fashion industry have been reflecting on what a humble, talented, dedicated and revolutionary photographer he was.
With people like Suzy Menkes of Vogue recalling that 'At age 87, Bill Cunningham was still cycling around New York, refusing my offer to share a taxi, even when it snowed. I shall miss him so. As will the fashion world which has lost an honest and true reporter worthy of the New York Times'.
What made Cunningham such a special figure in the industry was the way in which he only ever celebrated those he captured and the fashion they wore, never depicting his subjects in a negative way.
The 2010 documentary entitled Bill Cunningham New York made his name a household one not just one familiar in the industry. His vision was to never be on a publication's payroll for his work, not wanting the way he reported to be compromised. Famously Cunningham said 'Money is the cheapest thing, liberty and freedom are the most expensive'.
Unlike most street style photographers he did not purely focus on those who were attending Fashion Weeks but anyone who caught his attention. Anne Wintour once remarked that 'women who love fashion don't get dressed for men- or even other women- fashion people get dressed so they can get noticed by Bill Cunningham'.
Cunningham was a pioneer, and someone who let the fashion of the people on the streets shine. He will be missed by many in the industry and everyone who admired his work, but his approach to fashion photography will continue to be revolutionary. Scroll the gallery above to relive some of his most famous works.
Photo Credit: The New York Times, Vogue
Video Credit: SwankcoinsultingFirm
Like this post? Hit the heart to save to your profile for later