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A NEW SNAPPER: The legacy of Richard Avedon — The New Yorker’s first-ever staff photographer — isn’t easily carried on, but since his death four years ago, the magazine has been trying. Recently, the title signed Platon, whom New Yorker editor David Remnick described as being “clearly influenced by Avedon,” to be a staff photographer alongside Martin Schoeller and Robert Polidori, and though he’s already shot several assignments (among them, the barebacked photographs of Republican operative Roger Stone), this week will bring particular prominence. A 16-page portfolio of volunteer military members at various stages of their tours of duty accompanies a story by William Finnegan about post-traumatic stress disorder.
Remnick, who has written extensively on Russia, told WWD that he was drawn in particular to Platon’s cover portrait of Vladimir Putin as Time’s Person of the Year in 2007. “All the withheld intelligence and cunning. The coldness of those eyes. I found that startling,” he said. Platon’s contract takes him off the market for virtually all general-interest magazines, though he has a special provision to keep shooting for Time.
As for Platon himself, Remnick said: “He’s a fantastic guy to start with. As Groucho Marx used to say, well over 4 feet, orange leather jacket, orange sneakers….And he calls me ‘top man.’” — Irin Carmon