From my blog Obsessions by Gessica. First published June 2014.
“With the awareness that I was prone to live in my own head much of the time, and inclined to severe self-criticism, I began to have doubts whether I could create images on film that reflected the images in my mind’s eye.” Melvin Sokolsky
The 1963 Bubble series shot in Paris over ten days, and created for the Harper’s Bazaar Spring collection by New York photographer Melvin Sokolsky, is still to this day one of the more innovative photography experiments ever.
Although Melvin never had formal training in photography, using his father’s box camera at the age of ten gave him a head start in producing exquisite work.
His Inspiration of the bubble series came from a re-occuring dream where he saw himself floating in a bubble across exotic landscapes.
At the same time he was fascinated with the intricate design and shape of the faberge egg: hence the bubble was formulated, made of plexi glass and aircraft aluminium.
The challenge however was to position a telescopic crane at each location from which the bubble would be suspended.
The model Simone d’Aillencourt would hop into the bubble that was suspended a few feet off the ground. After being locked in safely with an air vent for her to breathe, the bubble was raised into position.
In his own words, “there were times when this choreographeed dance turned into a Laurel and Hardy comedy. The morning we shot on the Seine, the bubble was lowered overzealously into the water, flooding it up to Simone’s ankles, and in turn ruining an important pair of designer shoes.”
Purchase his Paris Art book 1963-1965