Picks and Pans Review: Jump Book

updated 12/08/1986 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/08/1986 01:00AM

by Philippe Halsman

Halsman, the great portrait photographer who died in 1979, was not one to just tell his subjects, "Say cheese." His series of photographs of people in midjump, which began on a whim when he was shooting the automotive Ford family in 1953, made him as famous as his 101 LIFE covers did. The collection of his jump pictures, originally published in 1959, has been augmented for this reprinting with seven photographs, most showing Halsman himself jumping with his subjects, Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly among them. They join shots of such people as Richard Nixon, Sophia Loren, Mike Wallace and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. Halsman's introduction notes that he was refused requests for jumps by such people as Edward R. Murrow and Van Cliburn. Halsman also indulges in analysis of "jumpology," trying to suggest what particular jumps mean. That seems precious, but the pictures themselves remain intriguing, as if the jumpers are revealing some essence of themselves that defies explanation. (Abrams, paper, $12.95)

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