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Allemagne – Berlin

The Museum für Fotografie in Berlin celebrates the centenary of the birth of June Newton, also known as Alice Springs, through a retrospective featuring two hundred photographs, many of which have never been shown before.

She has crafted intimate, radiant, and sensitive portraits that have made her a renowned photographer. June Newton (1923-2021), also known as Alice Springs, hailing from Melbourne, Australia, chose the pseudonym of a city in the heart of her native desert. After stepping in for her husband, Helmut Newton (1920-2004), who was down with the flu, she conducted her first photoshoot for the French cigarette brand Gitanes. This portrait of a smoking model marked the beginning of a new flourishing career. Since the 1970s, she has imposed her personal and artistic touch through fashion photos, celebrity portraits, and the punk scene of Los Angeles. Today, the Museum für Fotografie, in collaboration with the Helmut Newton Foundation she established after her husband’s death, sheds new light on her work. Two hundred photographs, many of them previously unseen, are presented for the first time in vintage prints on the first floor of the Berlin cultural institution


Richard Avedon, Brassaï, Ralph Gibson, Sheila Metzner, Robert Mapplethorpe, Nicole Kidman, Isabelle Adjani, Vivienne Westwood, Liam Neeson, Claude Chabrol… The greatest luminaries shine before her lens. “We see the entire spectrum of responses in these images: from proud posesto natural self-confidence and timid glances,” emphasise the exhibition organisers. However, fame or social status was not what interested her; June Newton wanted to capture their aura, individuality, and emotion. Studio shots were out of the question for her. Most of her portraits make use of natural light and unfold in situ, in public spaces or the subjects’ homes. This former theatre actress thus reveals the identity of each of her models. “Her lens often focuses on the human face, shown in tight close-up with the head and shoulders or as a three-quarter portrait,” recalls the institution. “Her subjects gaze curiously, openly, and directly into her 35 mm camera.” The retrospective also devotes ample space to portraits of her husband, whom she often immortalised during her own photoshoots, and some of her self-portraits. Intimate snapshots that extend the previous joint exhibition,

“Us and Them,” an ode to coupledom and art.

Nathalie Dassa

« Alice Springs: Retrospective » 

From June 3 to November 19, 2023

Museum für Fotografie

Genthiner Str. 38, Berlin