Helmut Newton. SUMO XL. 20th Anniversary
The Helmut Newton SUMO was a titanic book that towered above anything previously attempted. Twenty years later, we celebrate the legacy of this publishing venture in an XL edition, the result of a project conceived by Helmut Newton and revised by his wife June.
Gathering 464 images and a new booklet that takes us through the making of the SUMO, it’s a spectacular tribute to the larger-than-life
“Timeless. A reference work.”
— Der Standard
Helmut Newton. SUMO. 20th Anniversary
Helmut Newton, June Newton
Hardcover with booklet in slipcase, 26.7 x 37.4 cm, 464 pages
ISBN 978-3-8365-7819-6 (English, French, German)
The Helmut Newton SUMO in XL, revised by June Newton, with a making-of booklet XL
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 open, 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 Euro.
Images © The Helmut Newton Estate / Maconochie Photography