Melvin Sokolsky Bubble Series

The translucent bubble series was created by fashion photographer Melvin Sokolsky for the Harper’s Bazaar 1963 Spring Collection.  Haunted by a particular image from Hieronymus Bosch’s ‘The Garden of Delights,’ Sokolsky experienced a re-occurring dream in which he saw himself floating inside a bubble across exotic landscapes. Inspired, he quickly used the idea for the series. The Bubble was crafted to emulate a Faberge Egg, for which Sokolsky had great admiration for its design and workmanship.  

The bubble first took off in color from beyond the New York City skyline, following lands on the Seine River in Paris, where it begins a surreal black-and-white tour of Parisian streets, alleys, and cafes.  The bubble series was credited for launching the trend of bold, artistic visions within a 60's couture fashion photography.  Model Simone d'Aillencourt cavorts in a Plexiglas sphere.

Model Simone d'Aillencourt cavorts in a Plexiglas sphere, held together by a ring of aluminum and suspended by a 1/8th inch steel cable attached to a crane. The cable is often in the shot but is occasionally positioned or illuminated so it remains unseen.  In some cases, it was removed from the frame by hand, creating the illusion of a levitating sphere.  Although Sokolsky insisted that some retouching was involved,  photographs were never digitally manipulated.   

Sikorsky's overall concept was the chemistry between photographer and model, it was the most important aspects of his craft.  While he started his career as a fashion photographer, he had by the end of the 60's transitioned into making commercials and films alongside his photo work.  He was  responsible for a number of innovations including a computerized zoom lens in 1972 that got nominated for an Academy Award.  Sokolsky further illuminates his methods of a self-taught photographer perpetually interested in making bold statements and expressing nuanced concepts.


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