The Kennedys, By Mark Shaw


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The Independent Culture

"These photographs were taken in order to catch and reflect the mood, the feeling of a given moment. If the viewer receives from these pictures an understanding of the affection of the Kennedys for one another, their high spirits and enjoyment of life, the book will have fulfilled its purpose." So wrote the Life magazine photographer Mark Shaw in the original 1964 edition of The John F Kennedys: A Family Album.

But in this new expanded edition, Shaw's widow reveals that the publication was also a coping mechanism; that Shaw had become not only the Kennedy's unofficial family photographer but a close friend. It explains why the work of this pre-eminent fashion and portrait photographer never recovered from Kennedy's assassination, but also how he'd been able to get such fresh, candid shots; shots that, with their vigour, vitality and promise of fresh hope for America's future, were arguably instrumental in Kennedy's election successes. Shown right, Jackie on the beach in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, with her daughter, Caroline.