Summer Sleep by Irving Penn (1949)

The photograph titled “Summer Sleep” was created by Irving Penn in New York in 1949. This iconic image presents a person seemingly at rest, captured behind a translucent gauzy material, arguably a mosquito net, which suggests a summertime setting where such nets are commonly used. The composition focuses on the figure lying down with their head resting on their arm, evoking a sense of relaxation and vulnerability, possibly during a hot summer day. The image is textured with the weave of the fabric, featuring several flies on the surface, which enhances the realistic and somewhat raw quality of the scene. A table fan and what appears to be a saucer, a cup, and possibly some spilled content are also visible, contributing to the atmosphere of a lazy summer day’s nap disturbed by the heat. The details in this image are somewhat blurred by the material, adding to the overall dreamy and intimate feel of the photograph.

Other Photographs from Irving Penn

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