200 reasons to see Sam Haskins' retrospective

Take it from Tommy: "Sam has a refreshing sense of fun in his photography, and manages to capture the balance of a woman's inner and outer beauty." Both types of beauty (especially the outer kind) are on view in Fashion Etcetera, Sam Haskins' Hilfiger-sponsored, 200-piece retrospective at NYC's Milk Gallery, but especially the outer kind. The designer has been an admirer since the sixties, when Haskins' artful, irreverent nudes—like the sly-eyed Gill from Five Girls (above), or the iconic Cowboy Kate, which featured the titular (heh) Wild West-styled Kate often naked but for her gun holster and accompanying pony—brought the South African photographer to fame. The 200-piece exhibition, which is accompanied by a special-edition hardcover sold in Tommy stores, strikes a nice balance between his more recent fashion work (for the likes of Vogue and Harper's Bazaar) and the swinging-sixties cheesecake stuff (call it the etcetera). And it's a show that almost wasn't: Haskins, 82, suffered a stroke just hours before the opening, but we're happy to report he's recovering nicely and hasn't let a minor setback like that keep him from attending to the details. "Even in the emergency room, he was issuing instructions about the lighting in the gallery," his son Ludwig reports.
Sam Haskins: Fashion Etcetera runs through October 26 at Milk Gallery, 450 W. 15th St., NYC, (212) 645-2797, milkstudios.com; special-edition hardcover catalog, $100, available at Tommy Hilfiger stores and tommy.com

Photos: Sam Haskins

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