Splash!

Richard Martin, Author, Harold Koda, With Rizzoli International Publications $29.95 (140p) ISBN 978-0-8478-1186-1
In a manner both grandiosely metaphorical and plainly factual, the authors (directors at Manhattan's Fashion Institute of Technology and coauthors g of The Historical Mode ) have taken what many would perceive as a frivolous subject and transformed it into a meaningful commentary on the interplay of culture, society and fashion. So, although Martin and Koda g touch upon the various styles of swimsuits that have appeared over the years--from Jean Patou's proper 1928 two-piece wool suit to Gianfranco Ferre's provocative 1988 sheer, long-sleeve bodysuit--they also interpret the significance of swimwear in relation to ``our encounter with the water,'' to the bather as an ideal of beauty, to the cults of fitness and fashion, to the expression of geographical exoticism and to Hollywood's everchanging notion of what becomes a sex symbol most. The photographs in this oversize volume are g forceful and include stunning work by Helmut Newton, Andre Kertesz, Louise Dahl-Wolfe and Martin Munkacsi, as well as campy pin-ups of movie starlets--Marilyn Monroe, Rita Hayworth, Lana Turner--and Olympic swimming champions. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1990
Release date: 07/01/1990
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