William Klein, who photographed the energy of city life, dies at 96

Outside. Day light. Two boys in front of a door. The oldest, 11 or 12, holds a gun pointed at your left eye. He growls, ready to kill you. The youngest, maybe 8 years old, has the face of an angel. This is a grainy black and white photograph, staged circa 1954, titled “Gun 1, New York”.

Visual artist William Klein called it a self-portrait. They were both boys, he said. One grew angry on the streets of New York and was capable of anything. The other, sensitive and intelligent, moved to Paris in his youth and devoted himself to one artistic activity after another.

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