A photographer spent 25 years documenting rich people - meet some of her most memorable subjects
- Rich people and wealth inequality are major themes in photographer and filmmaker Lauren Greenfield's work.
- Last year she released the book "Generation Wealth" that pulls together the past 25 years of her work, and includes interviews and insights from both herself and her subjects.
- In April, Greenfield debuted her documentary film by the same name at Sundance Film Festival, with a wider release planned for July 2018.
Award-winning documentary photographer and filmmaker Lauren Greenfield has been photographing and interviewing rich people since the early 1990s. After attending college at Harvard, Greenfield returned to her home in Los Angeles and began documenting youth culture.At that time, she didn't realize that she was photographing the beginning of "a period of rampant materialism and wealth obsession," as economist and sociologist Juliet Schor writes in the introduction of "Generation Wealth," Greenfield's book that was released last year with Phaidon. Her subjects back then included a 12-year-old Kim Kardashian and other teens in Bel-Air, Los Angeles.
Since then, Greenfield's work has expanded internationally, examining mega-mansions, extravagant bottle service at nightclubs, a 24-karat solid gold toilet, America's obsession with plastic surgery, and much more.
"What I learned from many of [my subjects] is that chasing wealth is unending and ultimately unsatisfying. As the former Wall Street trader Sam Polk recognizes, it's an addiction like any other, and the more you have, the more you want and the more you think you need," wrote Greenfield in the introduction of her book.
This April, Greenfield debuted the documentary film "Generation Wealth" which brings her work in the book onto the big screen with in-depth interviews with many of her subjects, and examines wealth inequality. The film debuted at Sundance Film Festival, and is being released more broadly in select theaters this July.
Ahead, a look inside the book "Generation Wealth" with captions written by Greenfield, as well as more information about the upcoming documentary.