A visual library on Leica M6 Special Small Volume Edition rangefinder camera models - Index page


Self-Portrait in contack-work visual Š William Klein; Courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York
LEICA M6 TTL William Klein Special Configured Edition in Anthracite Grey finish*, 2001

* Wilkipedia explains the word "Anthracite:. originates from Greek word, literally means "a type of coal" from Anthrax. It is a hard, compact variety of mineral coal that has a high lustre property. It has the highest carbon count and contains the fewest impurities of all coals, despite its lower calorific content.

<<--- self-portrait in contact-sheet-work visual © William Klein; Courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

As I said earlier, this site is all about camera not so much on personality. But acknowledgeable famous icon or established personality who had made a name in the medium can often help enhance corporate image. Given a camera to the right hand and creative mind, photography can be an converted into an expression of art form and not entirely a recording device. It may be stupid to associate Leica with a football star or a sexy cat playing at Wimbledon Central Court in tennis. Leica had the advantage of started venturing into compact 35mm rangefinder cameras early, there were many great names surfaced in photography and in particularly, Leica photographers. In 1998, we have witnessed a special edition Leica M6 Platinum camera issued under a signature on one of the greatest name in the medium, the late Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908~2004). The second Leica which bear a signature of another photographer with equivalent weight and influence in modern photography was issued in 2001. This time around, the edition was a little different from nature of the issued M6 in 1998. It was a work of the photographer who was involved directly in configuring and produced a Leica M6TTL rangefinder camera. The signature work of the LEICA M6 TTL was by one of the living Leica legendary photographer in modern times, William Klein.

Fashion by Jean Desses, French Vogue by William Klein - Link to other site Smoke and Veil, Paris (Vogue), 1958 by William Klein - Link to other site Broadway and 103rd Street, New York 1954-55 by William Klein - Link to other site Hat + 5 Roses, Paris (Vogue), 1956 by William Klein - Link to other site
Cover for  Qui tes vous, Polly Maggoo? (Who are you Polly Maggoo? 1965-66) by WILLIAM KLEIN
I am not good at providing biography on others. esp. when it relates to a famous personality. So, I will just extract out how others perceive William Klein from various online reference sources as a from of introduction. In 2008, International Centre of Photography (http://www.icp.org/) had picked him as recipient of ICP's 2008's L I F E - T I M E .A C H I E V E M E N T winner.

" .. William Klein is a native New Yorker who has lived in Paris since 1948. As a photographer and filmmaker, Klein has influenced visual media in the U.S. and Europe for the better part of a century. During the 1950s and 1960s, he pioneered a new kind of street photography: to represent the fragmented urban chaos that was his subject, he produced work that was grainy, blurry, and distorted via wide-angle lenses, fast film, and unique framing and printing. His first book, Life is Good and Good for You in New York: Trance Witness Revels (1956) is widely considered to be one of the most important photography books ever published. Klein's many films, including Broadway by Light (1958), the first Pop film; Qui êtes vous, Polly Maggoo? (Who are you Polly Maggoo? 1965-66), Mohammed Ali the Greatest (1969-74), and The Messiah (2000), comprise another important body of work for the artist, as does his fashion photography for Vogue and currently Harper's Bazaar...".
Series f memorable photographs taken by William Klein
Fashion by Jean Desses, French Vogue, Smoke and Veil, Paris (Vogue), 1958; April 1961; Broadway and 103rd Street, New York 1954-55; Hat + 5 Roses, Paris (Vogue), 1956; Dance in Brooklyn, 1955; Candy Store, Amsterdam Avenue, New York 1954-55; Club Allegro Fortissimo; Moves + Pepsi, Harlem, 1955 Courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York. All images © William Klein

Ex-Manchester United Star Eric CANTONAŠ William Klein for FIFA 100 Exibitions link to BBC news website
" ... William Klein's approach to photography challenges the way people see the world. His photos have been described as being a lyric combination of black humor, acerbic social observation and daring graphic invention.' William Klein's pictures rewrote the photographer's rulebook by turning photographic "faults" into qualities. When he started out, Klein says, his maxim was, "Anything goes." "I came from painting, at a time when people were saying that painting and painting rules were dead," he recalls. "I thought the same thing could apply to photography. I thought that there were very specific things that you could do with a lens and camera that you couldn't do with any other medium. There is something interesting about those things specific to photography - grain, contrast, blur, cock-eyed framing, eliminating or exaggerating gray tones and so on. I thought it would be good to show what's possible, to say that this is as valid a way of using the camera as the conventional approaches." ... Ref: An extract from an interview with William Klein by Bob Bishop, Paris Voice, in 1989

<<<---There was another new approach to William Klein's photography at later years. One best interpretation was via this powerful shot of Ex-Manchester United Star Eric CANTONA© William Klein for FIFA 100 Exhibitions; "The philosophical Frenchman spent three hours with William Klein to set up his pose, which saw him strip to the waist and paint "You play to fight the idea of losing" across his chest.." BBC News Archive

On 28 November 2001, many of the active Leica collectors were again excited by another event after the 3 years lapse of the previous 1998 auction on Henri Cartier-Bresson 22-8-1908/Loius Vuitton signature LEICA M6 Platinum. This is the second time a Leica M6 body is the subject of a charity sale by the famous auction house, Christie's. This time around Christie’s, which had been commissioned to auction the H.C.B. edition earlier was again held a special auction session in Paris for the Willian Klein Leica M6 TTL rangefinder camera, along with one of the artist's Painted-Contact-Works*. The auction has a meaningful objective, as proceeds will be donated to French NGO foundation‚ Reporters sans frontières‘ ("RSF" (www.RSF.org) or "RWB" Reporters Without Borders). On the other hand, RSF will be publishing a photo album devoted to the selective work of William Klein titled "William Klein for Press Freedom". The publication, issued in bilingual French / English was distributed in selective countries in the west and all proceeds raised by the two events was intended to be used to assist welfare and legal expenses of imprisoned journalists around the globe.

Front & Rear section views of a William Klein's Signatured Edition LEICA M6TTL Anthracite finish with SUMMILUX-M 1:1.4/50mm ASPH lens auctioned by Christie's Auction in 2001

For the LEICA M6 TTL camera body w/Special Edition Serial Number: 2555500 and the matching LEICA 1:1.4/35mm SUMMILUX-M ASPH lens; William Klein had chosen an anthracite finish, the leather work for the camera body was using snakeskin of a protected Asian species for which a limited-catch is authorized. One of the most distinctive feature found on this special edition LEICA M6 TTL body was, it came with a very prominent Klein’s name which was engraved in RED at the top plate of the camera. The motto of the organization - "Il n‘y pas de liberté sans liberté de la presse“ (There is no freedom without press freedom) - was also being engraved on the back of the camera in black paint.

A unique and original work of William Klein for auction to raised fund for Reporters sans frontires

Special Editon of Leica M6TTL William Klein Signatured copy for freedom of press   Except for those who had attended the auction as well as the rightful owner of this special edition camera, no one has seen this camera auctioned 8 years ago. Here is another picture which shows a little different from the the one as shown in Christie's site.
The reptile leather work is shown here with a more natural colour of original nature. The lens has no special engraving and not sure if it has Anthracite-gray finishing.

William Klein is also an accomplished painter/artist. Probably his works on photographic medium often had been over-shadowned his talents on other medium in painting. At later years, he has developed another form of visual expression via a new method in Painted-Contact-Work which merges both ends of his creative minds in one. Even his self-portrait (as shown at the top of this page was presented this way.

<<-- The contact-work with theme of other frames taken for the Broadway and 103rd Street, New York 1954-55 was part of the auction of the LEICA M6 TTL William Klein Edition to raise funding for Reporters sans frontières.

Leica MP Anthracite finish, special issue Leica camera to commemoarte 50th Anniversary of Leica-M photography in JAPAN.
Christie's had moderated this sale under the Hammer Francois Curiel, Chairman of Christie's Europe and the CEO of Christie's France. This is the second time a Leica M6 is the subject of a charity sale auctioned by Christie's (the first package, signed by Henri Cartier-Bresson, was awarded in June 1998). Just as a reading reference: The realized Price for this William Klein Signature LEICA M6 TTL Anthracite Finish body with Summilux-M 1:1.4/50mm ASPH One-unit Edition (Christie-Sale No. 9638) was £9,400-00 (approx. USD15,369-00 in 2001)

<<<-- Not sure if this William Klein designed M6 had cast any influence over Leica cameras at later stage; but Anthracite material has been used in another occasion in a LEICA MP Anthrhracite Kit as special issue Leica camera to commemorate 50th Anniversary of Leica-M photography in JAPAN.

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Part 1 - Leica M6 / Hedri Cartier-Bresson, 1998 | Part 2 - Leica M6 TTL William Klein, 2001 | Part 3 - Discussions & Speical S/N of M6
Part 4
- Leica M6 electronic prototype camera, 1981 | Part 5 - Early LEICA M6 Technical Application camera ETH.Z, 1987
Part 6 - Leica M7 Prototype w/M6 chassis, 2002 | Part 7 - Leica M6 TTL Vaclav Havel Presentation kit, 2000 (info only)
Part 8
- Leica M6 TTL Martin Luther King Jr., 2001 (info only)
Others:- a) M6 TTL NOMI Baumgartl / charity kit

Main Index Page - Leica M6-series models / Main Index Page - Leica-M Rangefinder camera Models

Nomenclature / Main Reference Map for Leica M6 TTL Model(s) applicable for this William Klein M6 TTL Edition
Instruction Manuals:-
Leica M6 TTL 3.6 Mb PDF applicable to this for this William Klein M6 TTL Edition by Niels H. S. Nielsen

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Credit: Pictures and photo works of William Klein appeared herein serve as an introduction to this great mastery of Photography and copyrighted to respective William Klein and/or other rightful collectors and/or Museum, art centres. Images of the LEICA M6 William Klein Special Edition courtesy of Christie's Auction ®, who runs a every popular Christie's Online Auction Services. All Image(s) Copyright © 2008. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer/collectors.