The Original Paparazzo

Laura Kipnis is unimpressed by the recent treatment of celebrity stalker-photographer Ron Galella as an artist:

The term paparazzo derives from the name of one of the swarming photographers in Fellini’s La Dolce Vita; it’s also supposedly a play on the Italian word for the annoying buzzing of a mosquito. One thing you can say about Galella is that he never feared being annoying, or shirked the hazards. Marlon Brando knocked out five of his teeth when Galella wouldn’t stop photographing him; Galella sued, settling for $40K, the amount it cost to reconstruct his jaw. Which didn’t prevent him from again lying in wait for Brando following a benefit at the Waldorf-Astoria, though this time he wore a customized football helmet emblazoned with his name.