Ellen von Unwerth (Germany, b. 1954)

Ellen von Unwerth is a director and photographer whose bold and erotic images of women have left an indelible mark on the visual landscape of the fashion world. Born in Frankfurt, von Unwerth was a model in Paris for nearly a decade before turning to photography. Her 1989 images of Claudia Schiffer for a Guess jeans campaign, echoing the playfully feminine style of 1950s pinups, earned both Schiffer and von Unwerth wide attention. Over the years, her work has been featured regularly in magazines like Interview, Vanity Fair, Vogue, I-D, and The Face, appearing on covers and in both editorial and commercial contexts. In 1991, she won first prize at the International Festival of Fashion Photography.


Von Unwerth’s 1995 photoshoot of Drew Barrymore for Playboy magazine is among her most popular work and, coupled with an array of album covers for such artists as Janet Jackson and Britney Spears, gave her standing as a celebrity photographer beyond the borders of the fashion world. Von Unwerth’s pictures have a distinctive look and feel, with saturated colors and dense compositions, while also, in certain cases, paying homage to great photographers of the 20th century. The 2015 Tree of Love, Bavaria, in which a nude model reclines inside the heart-shaped hollow of an enormous decaying trunk, recalls Edward Weston’s sensuous use of the body’s geometry in his compositions. And the dramatically lit Tic Tac Toe from 2010, showing a scantily clad woman posing on a city street at night, evokes Helmut Newton’s atmospheric photograph of a model wearing Yves St. Laurent’s Le Smoking jacket, shot for French Vogue in 1975.


Von Unwerth has published several books of her photographs, including Revenge, in 2003, and Fräulein, in 2009. Those volumes have been joined this year by one showcasing the photos of her new series “Heimat,” in which she playfully combines visual tropes of traditional Bavarian life with her signature eroticism and wit. She is represented by several dealers, including the Staley-Wise Gallery, in New York, and Galerie Trabant, in Kitzbühel, Austria.

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Heidi, Kitzbuehel

Ellen von Unwerth

Heidi, Kitzbuehel
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Color Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A girl with red stockings is walking on a hiking way in Kitzbühel, Austria. In the background you can see traditional cabin in the alps and the mountains "Wilder Kaiser". In "Heimat" (...
Marquise, Paris

Ellen von Unwerth

Marquise, Paris
Ellen von Unwerth
1990s Color Photography
C Print
This print is signed by the photographer and is in an edition of 3. Please inquire for additional sizes.
Garce, Paris

Ellen von Unwerth

Garce, Paris
Ellen von Unwerth
Early 2000s Black and White Photography
Silver Gelatin Print
This print is signed by the photographer and is in an edition of 15.
Parasol (Claudia Schiffer)

Ellen von Unwerth

Parasol (Claudia Schiffer)
Ellen von Unwerth
1980s Black and White Photography
Nude portrait of the supermodel under a sun shade. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most famous contemporary artists. ...
Conchita, photographed by Ellen von Unwerth

Ellen von Unwerth

Conchita, photographed by Ellen von Unwerth
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Color Photography
Art nouveau masterpiece the „Goldene Adele“ by Gustav Klimt interpreted with a portrait of Austrian singer and drag queen Conchita. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galle...
Naomi Campbell

Ellen von Unwerth

Naomi Campbell
Ellen von Unwerth
Early 2000s Color Photography
Portrait of the supermodel in lingerie, gloves and knee-length boots on the phone. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the mo...
The Story of Olga II

Ellen von Unwerth

The Story of Olga II
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Nude Photography
Classical nude picture of a model from behind in a corset next to an ancient bust sculpture. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography represent...
Meow, Jessica Chastain

Ellen von Unwerth

Meow, Jessica Chastain
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Photography
Portrait of the redhead actress and Oscar nominee wearing a lace hairband with cat ears in front of a turquoise/blue background. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleri...
Smoke

Ellen von Unwerth

Smoke
Ellen von Unwerth
1990s Nude Photography
Nude portrait of the supermodel in a Parisian 20s look smoking a cigarette. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most fam...
David Bowie and Kate Moss II

Ellen von Unwerth

David Bowie and Kate Moss II
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Black and White Photography
Legendary portrait of the supermodel and music superstar lying on sofa and carpet. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the mo...
Carla Bruni Lavazza

Ellen von Unwerth

Carla Bruni Lavazza
Ellen von Unwerth
Late 20th Century Black and White Photography
Glamourous portrait of the supermodel in a pool smoking with an Espresso coffee. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most...
Heavy duty, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Heavy duty, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Color Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A blond girl in a traditional bavarian dress is carrying a heavy milk can in a cowshed. In the background another girl clears the dung out. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites vi...
On the high horse, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

On the high horse, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
23 girls are standing in front of an old bavarian farmhouse. They are wearing traditional "Lederhosen". One of them is holding a cold blood horse. On the horse is another girl sitting o...
Marks of love, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Marks of love, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
two girls in traditional bavarian dresses marking their names in a tree with a knife. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood ...
The look of love, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

The look of love, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A beautiful blond girl in a traditional bavarian dress, she wears red lipstick, is keeping watch for the love to come. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photograph...
The pet, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

The pet, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A topless girl in a barn is holding a brown chicken on her arms. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Bavaria. ...
Redemption, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Redemption, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A girl in bavarian dress in a very lascivious pose in an old chapel. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Bavar...
Titty Twister, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Titty Twister, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Two girls in traditional bavarian dresses on the Oktoberfest in Munich. Both wearing hats. They are holding beer mugs in their hands and the one is squeezing the breast of the other gir...
Keeping it clean, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Keeping it clean, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A girl is washing clothes in a very clear lake in the bavarian alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Bavar...
Come with me, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Come with me, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
2 young topless girls running in white dresses over a green meadow in the bavarian alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childho...
Hay fever II, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Hay fever II, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A topless girl with red socks is sitting in the hay and holds a big hay fork in her hand. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childh...
Freshly bloomed, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Freshly bloomed, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
4 young girls lying in old fashioned swimsuit on a blanket at a lake in the bavarian alps and enjoy the sun. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey...
Jigsaw, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Jigsaw, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
2 girls in bavarian "Lederhosen" are working with a big jigsaw in front a an traditional farmhouse in the bavarian alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photogra...
A scrub a day, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

A scrub a day, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
In this picture you can see a naked woman who takes a bath in milk and scrubs her back with a big brush. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey thr...
We can do it! Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

We can do it! Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
3 beautiful girls in bavarian "Lederhosen" posing in front of a traditional farmhouse in the bavarian alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey ...
Milky Way, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Milky Way, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A naked girl with a green hat is taking a bath in milk in a big barrel. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Ba...
Farmer's dream, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Farmer's dream, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A young and handsome farmer poses in traditional bavarian "Lederhosen" on a hay bale in a barn. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her ...
On the right track II

Ellen von Unwerth

On the right track II
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A topless girl with a bobble cap is lying prone on a sledge in a winter wonderland. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood ho...
On the right track, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

On the right track, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A young blond girl is wearing traditional "Lederhosen". She sits on a sledge in the bavarian alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through h...
Mr. Snowman, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Mr. Snowman, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A young girl in a fury bikini is leaning very lascivious against a snowman. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland o...
Knitty Gritty, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Knitty Gritty, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
In this picture a young woman is sitting on a bench beside a masonry heater and knits. She is wearing a traditional bavarian dress and red high heels. In "Heimat" (german for homeland)...
Maid, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Maid, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A young woman under an old table is sweeping with a broom all the flour which is on the floor. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her c...
Magic Mushrooms, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Magic Mushrooms, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Color Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Two girls on their search for mushrooms in the wood are playing wild and happy with their legs up in the air. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journe...
Make it shine, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Make it shine, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Two girls in underwear in an old traditional kitchen. One is scrubbing the floor and the other one is watching her. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic ...
Summer heat, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Summer heat, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A topless girl is lying on a wagon full of hay and enjoys the summer sun. She wears a red hat with feathers on it. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic j...
Treat and whip, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Treat and whip, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A topless girl is riding on a donkey on a beautiful green summer meadow and entices the donkey with a carrot. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journe...
Got milk, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Got milk, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A blond girl in a traditional bavarian dress drinks fresh milk in a cowshed. Some milk drops out of her mouth in a very lascivious way. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewer...
Apple thieves, Bavaria

Ellen von Unwerth

Apple thieves, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Nude Photography
Archival Pigment Print
§ girls in traditional black forest dresses playing under an appletree. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Ba...
The Story of Olga – Smoke

Ellen von Unwerth

The Story of Olga – Smoke
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Nude Photography
Provocative nude picture of a masked model smoking and wearing lingerie. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most famous ...
Upstairs

Ellen von Unwerth

Upstairs
Ellen von Unwerth
1990s Black and White Photography
Semi-nude model in lingerie from behind ascending a staircase. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most famous contempora...
Little Beast 2

Ellen von Unwerth

Little Beast 2
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Color Photography
Provocative picture of two disguised models in rose underwear and with bunny ears on a sofa. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography represent...
Little Beast

Ellen von Unwerth

Little Beast
Ellen von Unwerth
21st Century and Contemporary Photography
Provocative picture of a model in a pink/rose bunny costume eating a carrot on a sofa. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing th...
Freshly Bloomed, Bavaria
Freshly Bloomed, Bavaria
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Color Photography
C Print
Signed by the photographer.
Bathing Beauties II, Paris
Bathing Beauties II, Paris
Ellen von Unwerth
1990s Color Photography
C Print
Signed by the photographer.
Baking Party – from the Heimat series

Ellen von Unwerth

Baking Party – from the Heimat series
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Color Photography
Picture of four models with braided hair in lingerie kneading dough. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most famous cont...
Keyhole - from the Heimat series

Ellen von Unwerth

Keyhole - from the Heimat series
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Color Photography
Picture of a model in a pink dress and with braided hair spinning. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography representing the most famous contem...
On the Horse - from the Heimat series

Ellen von Unwerth

On the Horse - from the Heimat series
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Color Photography
Picture of three models in short leather trousers with a horse in Bavaria, Germany, in front of a traditional house. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine ...
Pretzel – from the Heimat series

Ellen von Unwerth

Pretzel – from the Heimat series
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Color Photography
Picture of a model in a pink and blue traditional Bavarian costume looking through a Pretzel. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photography represen...
We can do it! - from the Heimat series

Ellen von Unwerth

We can do it! - from the Heimat series
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Black and White Photography
Picture of three models in short leather trousers in 50s style in front of brown wood in Bavaria, Germany. PREISS FINE ARTS is one of the world’s leading galleries for fine art photog...
Eve, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Eve, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Eve is sitting on a ladder in a tree and waits for Adam with an apple in her hand. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood hom...
Ay Ay Captain, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Ay Ay Captain, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Two girls in traditional bavarian dresses are in a rowboat at a Lake in the Bavarian Alps. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her child...
On the high horse II, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

On the high horse II, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Three girls in traditional bavarian dresses are sitting on a horse. One of them is holding a rifle. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through ...
Confessions, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Confessions, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Two girs lightly dressed sitting on an old red hand painted wodden bed. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Ba...
Garden of Eden, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Garden of Eden, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Adam and Eve are sitting on a ladder in an apple tree. Eve is holding an apple in her hand. Both wear traditional blackforest dresses. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers...
Chicks, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Chicks, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
2 girls in traditional bavarian dresses are sitting on a bank and cuddling a chicken. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood ...
Hay fever II, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Hay fever II, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
Naked female is sitting in the hay and poses with a pitchfork. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Bavaria. He...
Tete-à-Tete, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Tete-à-Tete, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
2 girls in traditional bavarian dresses showing their cleavage. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey through her childhood homeland of Bavaria. H...
 Climate change, Bavaria 2015

Ellen von Unwerth

Climate change, Bavaria 2015
Ellen von Unwerth
2010s Contemporary Black and White Photography
Archival Pigment Print
A girl in traditional bavarian dress and fury boots stands in the snow and is holding a brush in her hand. In "Heimat" (german for homeland) invites viewers on a photographic journey t...