Vogue lettersVogue letters The Jack Robinson Archive preserves and promotes the legacy of Jack Robinson as a photographer and as an artist. When he passed away in 1997, Jack left behind thousands of negatives organized into hundreds of brown envelopes, organized by subject. Inside each were negatives in glassine sleeves and, occasionally, an original contact sheet. Also left behind were Jack’s date books, correspondence, a multitude of advertising test prints, model releases, and Vogue magazine tear sheets, as well as a selection of photographs that Jack had printed in preparation for his first gallery show. In all, these boxes contained the complete output of a working artist, the sum total of a photographer’s work from the early 1950s through the early 1970s.

Upon discovery of this treasure trove, Dan Oppenheimer and Susan Carr Oppenheimer, the heirs to Jack’s estate, created an organization that would expose to the world the work of Jack Robinson. Dan was intimately familiar with Jack’s work as a stained glass designer, but no one could have predicted the wealth of images in these envelopes. 

Model releasesModel releases Working with Eric Rachlis, then of the Hulton Archive, they organized the envelopes into categories.  Over time, the envelopes were classified, removed from their original packaging, and stored in acid-free sleeves and files. Through research, the subjects were identified and, where possible, the photographs were dated. At this time, thousands of Jack’s photographs have been scanned and cleaned. The work, however, is far from complete. There is still a wealth of images that have not yet been processed, including thousands of fashion images from Jack’s pre-Vogue period, from 1957 to 1965. 

Jack’s work can now be purchased through the website and from our gallery partners, both in limited edition silver gelatin and digital prints. Two books on the photography of Jack Robinson are now available here as well. Jack Robinson On Show: Portraits 1958-72 was published in 2011, and A Sojourn in Paradise: Jack Robinson in 1950s New Orleans was published in 2020.


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