Assembled with passion over the course of nearly two decades, the collection of Leland Hirsch tells the story of some of the most recognizable photographs of the 20th and 21st centuries. A pioneer in the creative and scientific development of beauty products, an authority on haircolor, visionary thought-leader and industry innovator,

Leland has defined both his career and art collection by the search for “what should be that is not. The exceptional photographs that comprise the Hirsch collection reflect a unique and sophisticated vision sensitive to life’s beautiful contradictions, from Man Ray’s surrealist Arm (Lot 18), to Richard Avedon’s iconic Dovima with Elephants, Evening Dress by Dior, Cirque d’Hiver, Paris (Lot 27), to Diane Arbus’s disquieting Child with a Toy Hand Grenade in Central Park, N. Y. C.

(Lot 33).

Born into a family of chemists, Leland was surrounded by the beauty industry from an early age. In the 1960s and 1970s, he began his career as a haircolor developmental consultant for Redken Laboratories and Logics/Clairol. In 1972, he opened The Color Salon, the world’s largest haircolor department, at NuBest & Co. In the 1980s and 1990s he revolutionized the haircolor industry with the development and introduction of Artec professional haircolor and associated color care products. It became one of the most successful professional beauty companies and was acquired by L’Oréal Paris. In 2000, Leland joined industry icons Vidal Sassoon, Paul Mitchell, and Horst Rechelbacher when he became the first haircolor specialist to receive the North American Hairstyling

Award’s Lifetime Achievement Award from the Professional Beauty Association, Leland’s affinity for art and creativity continues to be the passion that fuels his love of beauty and his vision for what will become the re-modernization and future of haircolor. In 2016, he seized the opportunity to fill a void in the industry, introducing Celeb Luxury, Viral and Gem Lites, unprecedented global color maintenance products in modern, fashion and intense primary, secondary and traditional haircolors that are so modern today.

Leland is no mere patron of the art world. His affinity for the glossy, editorial images of Irving Penn’s Issey Miyake Design with Black Fan (Lot 24), Herb Ritts’ Stephanie, Cindy, Christy, Tatjana, Naomi, Hollywood (Lot 1), and Steven Meisel’s Madonna Hitching (Lot 50) was developed after decades spent on set, working with top photographers and providing commentary for photoshoots with Elle, Vogue, Mademoiselle, and Harper’s Bazaar magazines. As Leland has said, “It’s Irving Penn to a collector, but he’s Mr. Penn to those who worked with him.”

Leland’s unique vision is apparent in each photograph in his collection. Although most works are elegant experiments in gradients from black to white, a collection formed by a master colorist would not be complete without a few carefully chosen vibrant color photographs: the Double Jack in the Pulpit (Lot 51) by Robert Mapplethorpe and World # 26 (Lot 44) by Ruud van Empel. Each piece evidences Leland’s personal, emotional connection to his collection and to living a truly beautiful life.

Leland’s Gallery Art

Artwork lent to Galleries and Museums.