Helmut Newton - Baby SUMO
Helmut Newton (1920–2004) always showed a healthy disdain for the easy or predictable, so it’s no surprise that the SUMO was an irresistible project. The idea of a book the size of a private exhibition, with spectacular images reproduced to state-of-the-art origination and printing standards, emerged from an experimental dialogue between photographer and publisher. With the SUMO weighing in—boxed and shrink-wrapped—at 35.4 kg (just under 80 pounds), Newton created a landmark book that stood head and shoulders above anything previously attempted, both in terms of conceptual extravagance and technical specifications.
Published in an edition of 10,000 signed and numbered copies, the SUMO sold out soon after publication and quickly multiplied its value. It now features in numerous collections around the world, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art. The legendary copy number one, signed by more than 100 of the book’s featured celebrities, broke the record for the most expensive book published in the 20th century, sold at an auction in Berlin on April 6, 2000 for 620,000 German marks—about 317,000 euros.
Now, in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Helmut Newton’s birth, the publishing venture is back in a limited-edition Baby SUMO, complete with its original bookstand by Philippe Starck. A rare opportunity to own a piece of art-book history!
Published by Taschen.