Michael Bierut + Jessica Helfand | Audio


Michael and Jessica talk about boxing and photography, and why both arts have endured beyond their heyday. They cover the bouts between Floyd Mayweather, Jr., and Manny Pacquiao; Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston; Neil Leifer and the second Ali-Liston fight; and Mary Ellen Mark (who died on the 50th anniversary of that rematch) and her subjects.

On the undercard, Michael recalls a “pugilistic incident” with a classmate named Mickey, who drew first blood.

Also discussed:

  • George Bellows, Stag at Sharkey’s and Dempsey and Firpo
  • Mayweather-Pacquiao: Kelefa Sanneh in The New Yorker and Carlo Rotella in the Times Magazine
  • Covers by George Lois: Sonny Liston as Santa Claus; Calling a Title Fight; Ali as St. Sebastian. Also, from our archives, Adam Harrison Levy on The Passion of George Lois
  • Joyce Carol Oates, On Boxing
  • Sue Jaye Johnson’s film T-Rex
  • Knockout font
  • Dave Mondy, How Things Break
  • Melissa Harris, Remembering Mary Ellen Mark, 1940-2015
  • Thanks to MOO for sponsoring this episode. Learn more about Moo Letterpress business cards.

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    Image from George Lois's Esquire cover "Last Man in the Ring".

    Posted in: Ideas, The Observatory

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