In his long career, Elliott Erwitt almost always carried two cameras, one with black and white film and one with color. As a press release for his first comprehensive U.S. show of color work notes, Erwitt “comes from an era when few photographers worked in color,” but he used both, sometimes shooting similar scenes with each. On view at Edwynn Houk Gallery in New York City from October 20 to November 19, “Elliott Erwitt: Kolor” includes images ranging from Marilyn Monroe on the set of The Seven Year Itch to the Obamas at their inaugural ball presiding over a sea of cell phone cameras.
Published as a book with the same name by teNeues in 2013, the show includes images made primarily using now-obsolete Kodachrome and Ektachrome film—the K in Kolor is Erwitt’s tribute to Kodak film. Combining images shot for assignments with those made for himself, the show highlights Erwitt’s visual wit and classical eye. Erwitt, who lives in New York City, says in a statement, “Normally, I prefer shooting in black and white for my personal pictures. But now, having extensively examined my past color pictures, I am less dogmatic. In the end, it is only the quality of the pictures that counts.”