facebook youtube instagram



21.02.2012 - 22.04.2012


Face to face with the political leaders of our time. A portrait of power at the highest levels.

Commissioned by the New Yorker, Platon made a unique series of political portraits during the 2009 UN-general assembly in New York. In only five days he photographed more than hundred heads of government in a makeshift studio at the UN-building on the East River.

The most arresting images of the series are now going to be presented at WestLicht. The show will include images of democratically elected heads of state, as well as dictators, peace activists and cruel rulers. ”In a way I treat them all democratically”, Platon says in a statement ”My way of making pictures unifies them: the good, the bad, the powerful, the weak – confused all these are the times in which we live.”

Platon collects the protagonists of the global political scene and puts them into contrast to each other, using frontal esthetics. It's a series of large format images of astounding intensity, playing with facial expressions and features of the portrayed. At the same time his way of portraying is challenging the myth that a photographic image of a face can reveal the true character of a human being.

Platon Antoniou, son of an English mother and a Greek father, was born in London in 1968. He grew up in Greece and studied graphic design, photography and arts in London. His portrait of Vladimir Putin was published on the cover of Time Magazine in 2007. He was awarded the World Press Photo Award, in the most prestigious international photo competition.

The book POWER PLATON with photographs by Platon and an essay by Pulitzer Price winner and editor in chief of the New Yorker David Remnick, was published by Schirmer/Mosel in 2009.

“He is far more than a technician with a knack for access. He does constant battle with the subject’s practiced capacity to evade a penetrating eye. ”
David Remnick, New Yorker

To the exhibition preview >

Vladimir Putin
Russian prime minister,
in office since May 2008. © Platon

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
President of Iran, in office since August 2005.
© Platon

Barack Obama
President of the United States of America, in office since January 2009.
© Platon

Christina Fernández
President of Argentina, in office since December 2007.
© Platon

Heinz Fischer
President of Austria, in office since July 2004.
© Platon

Tony Blair
Former prime minister of the United Kingdom, in office from May 1997 - June 2007.
© Platon

Robert Mugabe
President of Simbabwe, in office since December 1987.
© Platon

Hugo Chávez
President of Venezuela, in office since February 1999.
© Platon

Silvio Berlusconi
Former prime minister of Italy, in office from May 2008 - November 2011.
© Platon

Benjamin Netanyahu
Prime minister of Israel, in office since March 2009.
© Platon

Muammar Gaddafi
Former Lybian leader, in office from September 1969 - August 2011.
© Platon

George W. Bush
President of the United States of America, in office from Jannuary 2001 - Jannuary 2009.
© Platon

Wen Jiabao
Premier of China, in office since March 2003.
© Platon

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Prime minister of Turkey, in office since 2003.
© Platon

Jacob Zuma
President of South Africa, in office since May 2009.
© Platon