Saul Leiter: The photographer who saw the world in color

Updated 16th February 2016
Saul Leiter: The photographer who saw the world in color
Saul Leiter (1923-2013) was an American photographer best known for his pioneering role in the use of color photography.
He was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to an Orthodox Jewish family. Leiter was given his first camera at around 11 years old by his mother. He would later abandoned his theological studies in pursuit of art.
At the age of 23, he packed his bags and moved to New York in order to fulfill his dream of becoming a painter. Using the city and where he lived for almost 60 years as influence, Leiter would stroll around his neighborhood everyday taking photographs.
Never leaving his apartment without his camera, his neighborhood and its residents became the focus of a lot of his work.
In 1947, he began to shoot photographs in color. At the time, capturing images in color, as opposed to black and white, was regarded as vulgar by some photographers.
Leiter continued to pursue the expensive and often unreliable color photography medium.
His work is now widely celebrated among those in the industry as well as artists. Todd Hayes, who recently directed the film Carol, credits Leiter as being an inspiration.
The exhibition "Saul Lieter: Retrospective" is on from 22 Jan to 3 April 2016 at The Photographers' Gallery in London. It will showcase more than of 100 of Leiter's works, including early black-and-white images, color sketchbooks and color photographs.