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Bill Cunningham, Legendary New York Photographer, Dies at 87

By Melissa Gutierrez
Posted On Jun 27, 2016
Bill Cunningham, Legendary New York Photographer, Dies at 87

“He who seeks beauty will find it.”

~ Bill Cunningham

With his keen eye for emerging styles, passion for fashion, and affinity for photography, Bill Cunningham indeed sought and found beauty in the sprightly streets of New York City. A roving street photographer capturing the trends of fashion-forward New Yorkers, Cunningham became a recognized name in the metropolis.

Thus, it is with a heavy heart that we say farewell to New York’s beloved Cunningham as he passed away June 25 from complications from a stroke. He was 87.

A Harvard University dropout, Cunningham began his career as a designer of women’s hats before moving on to write about fashion for Women’s Daily and the Chicago Tribune. It wasn’t long before Cunningham began taking photographs at both runway shows and on the bustling streets of the Big Apple. He began regularly contributing pictures to the Times in the 1970s and joined full-time in 1993.

Riding around Manhattan on his bicycle and always donning his iconic blue French workman’s jacket, Cunningham discretely photographed the beau monde of the city and celebrated styles before they even became trends.


His appreciation for all things fashion transpired in photographic brilliance. Cunningham understood that fashion was not solely constrained to the limelight of the catwalk nor the front cover of Vogue.

Fashion is bigger than trends and high-end labels; it is art. It is the ultimate creative outlet that lends itself to the manifestation of our inner self.

We are what we wear.

Our fashion sense is a testament of one’s matchless uniqueness and no one understood or admired this better than Cunningham, may he rest in peace.