About the Photographer
American, b. 1945
Steven Meisel began his career as an illustrator in the fashion industry, working for the designer Halston and teaching part time at Parsons The New School for Design, New York. A self-taught photographer, he began photographing models on his own time and eventually came to the attention of Seventeen magazine. Since the 1980s he has been a leading fashion photographer, working regularly for U.S. and Italian Vogue, for which he has created the cover photograph and lead editorial story for every issue.
In 1988 The Gap launched an advertising campaign titled the "Individuals of Style," for which it commissioned leading photographers to create black and white portraits of famous cultural figures. Meisel chose to photograph model and actress Patti Hanson, whom the ad describes as a "renaissance woman." Intended for display in bus stop shelters, the photographs from the campaign are printed at a large scale and overlaid with the Gap logo. Along with the photograph by Meisel, MoCP's collection includes portraits commissioned by the Gap from five other photographers. These selections were exhibited at MoCP in 1994. Photographs from campaign were also presented at the National Portrait Gallery, London in 2007.