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From Paris to Turin and Seoul: Women In Motion supports the Vivian Maier retrospective

After showing in Paris and Turin, the Vivian Maier retrospective underwritten by Women In Motion will open in Seoul from August 4 to November 13, 2022. By lending its support to these exhibitions, Kering upholds its commitment to women through an effort to encourage recognition and discussion about their contributions to photography.

Finding Vivian Maier

Born in 1926 in New York City, Vivian Maier observed American society in the 1950s, capturing its major social and political changes, the rise of the American dream and modernity through the lens of her ever-ready Rolleiflex. Yet, her photographs—mostly shot in the streets of the New York City and Chicago, where she worked as a governess —had never been shown before. In fact, due to a lack of financial means, Vivian Maier developed very few photographs during her lifetime, instead storing negatives in boxes piled up in storage. Reserved and private by nature, Vivian kept her passion to herself, apparently never attempting to make a living from her photographs.

 

Maier’s work therefore remained largely unknown to the public until 2007, when her assets were auctioned for non-payment on the unit in which they were stored. One of the buyers, John Maloof, recognized the value of the negatives and digitized them. He then published the book Vivian Maier, Street Photographer, which caught the attention of the American media. Starting in 2011, exhibitions dedicated to Vivian Maier’s work made her a star posthumously. In 2021, the Musée du Luxembourg organized the first worldwide retrospective devoted to the photographer.  

Previous Vivian Maier exhibitions supported by Women In Motion

Paris and the Musée du Luxembourg

September 15, 2021 to January 16, 2022

In 2021, the Musée du Luxembourg held a retrospective of Maier’s work, with support from Kering through its Women In Motion program. The exhibition, curated by Anne Morin, revealed the complexity and variety of Vivian Maier’s work and aesthetic. The retrospective showcased never-before-seen photographs discovered in 2007, among them vintage prints by the photographer herself, Super-8 footage that had never been shown publicly, and audio recordings.

Turin and Musei Reali

February 9 to June 26, 2022

Following the success of the Paris show, which drew more than 200,000 visitors, the exhibition moved to the Chiablese wing of the Royal Museums of Turin. A portion of this exhibition was devoted to Vivian Maier’s trip to Italy, featuring never-before-seen shots of Turin and Genoa. This retrospective also marked the first event supported by Women In Motion in Italy, a country of special importance to Kering and its brands.

Seoul and Ground Seesaw Seongsu

August 4 to November 13, 2022

The exhibition moves to Asia, where Vivian Maier traveled in 1959, visiting Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and India. From August 4 to November 13, 2022, pictures from that trip will be shown at the Ground Seesaw Seongsu gallery in Seoul, South Korea. This is the first time Women In Motion has lent its support to an event in South Korea, marking the further development of initiatives and projects highlighting women’s contributions to the arts in that country.

Selection of works to discover

New York, NY, 1953 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Chicago, IL, 1960 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Chicago, IL, n.d. ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Armenian woman fighting on East 86th Street, New York, NY, September 1956 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Central Park Zoo, New York, NY, 1959 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Self-Portrait, 1955 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Untitled, n.d. ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Untitled, n.d. ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Self-Portrait, 1956 ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

Self-portrait, n.d. ©Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY

The Exhibition in figures

260,000+ visitors

attended the exhibitions in Paris and Turin

270 prints

in both color and black and white are featured

3 countries

presenting the exhibition (France, Italy, South Korea)

9 sections

structure the exhibitions, revealing different periods in Vivian Maier’s life

Going beyond

Women In Motion is committed to supporting the arts and culture by putting women in the spotlight. The program organizes exhibitions, studies and publications in an effort to shift perspectives and advance the cause of gender equality. Discover all the projects supported by the Women In Motion program on the Supporting initiatives for change page.