Bunny’s Back

Miami’s Legendary Pin-Up Photographer Opens New Studio
By Susana Baker

One of my favorite galleries is the Center for Visual Communication in Wynwood. Director Barry Fellman is at the top of his game, showcasing iconic images and gifted geniuses who’ve created art history. And now hanging on its hallowed walls is the work of Bunny Yeager, Miami’s legendary pin-up photographer.

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Bunny, the first and only female pin-up photographer of her day. In her early life, she enjoyed modeling, writing and designing swimsuits, and she won several Miami beauty pageants. But it was her pictures of then-unknown Bettie Page that catapulted both women to worldwide fame in 1954. That Playboy centerfold photo launched Yeager’s career and a lifelong friendship with legendary publisher Hugh Hefner.

She then produced pin-up portraits for multiple men’s magazines in the ‘50s, and her composition, both on location and in studio, captivated the industry. Yeager became a master at capturing the female form and highlighting her models’ exotic features.

Along the way, she developed distinctive techniques that inspired a generation of future photographers and defined a new genre of portrait photography. These tricks and secrets are published in more than 30 books documenting Yeager’s 50 years of experience. Her newest book — Bunny Yeager’s Darkroom, by Petra Mason (Rizzoli, 2012) — features more than 250 of her classic shots, many in full-page format. They dazzle and delight through more than five decades of Yeager’s catalogued culture.

Today, Yeager’s new studio at the Center for Visual Communication serves as a permanent venue for her to develop more portrait photography and complete new projects. It will also house an ongoing exhibition of her iconic images of Bettie Page and other models she discovered.

Her studio is the first of CVC’s Miami Masters studio program, which provides working space to notable local artists. CVC is committed to celebrating arts icons who have influenced South Florida’s vibrant art scene, and Yeager is certainly one of them.

For more information on Bunny Yeager, contact studiomanager@visual.org or call 305.571.1415. To see her amazing exhibition, visit 557 NW 27th Street in Wynwood. Studio hours are by appointment.

 

About Susana Baker:
Susana Baker is a resident of Dade County and a mother of two, Alex and Chantal. For an all-inclusive art tour with a private Cu- rator/guide, call Susana Baker at 305.767.5000 or visit www. theartexperiences.com. To learn about art happenings in town, tune in to 880AM The Biz every Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. for ART- TALK, Susana’s segment which brings you “From the Canvas to the Red Carpet.” You can also listen live at www.880thebiz.com.

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