Franz Hubmann, Alberto Giacometti, 1951

The face of the sculptor Alberto Giacometti was one of the most photographed of the post-war era. Together with Samuel Beckett he represented experience, just as Picasso stood for creativity as inventiveness. Artists had featured in Europe’s pantheon before, but never to this degree. They stepped into the place recently vacated by the political leaders of the 1930s, and promised a new kind of society open to personal values. Yet there is a paradox in this close-up of the sculptor’s face, for was associated – especially in the 1940s – with spindly figures which appeared only to exist at a distance. Giacometti had, it seems, no wish to violate his subjects’ privacy. If this is the case, Hubmann’s portrait looks very much like a violation, for the photographer is close enough to pick out every line and wrinkle. Both Giacometti and Beckett, however, were masters of impassivity, whose faces could be understood merely as external facades to be worked on by time, weather or natural forces.

taken from The Photography Book, Phaidon
Past Auction Results for Franz Hubmann Art – Franz Hubmann on artnet
Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966)