Cutting-edge show comes to a jewel in Ohio

      (AAPNW) – Going on view for the first time as a major museum exhibition at the Akron Art Museum on Saturday, October 23, 2010 and through January 23, 2011, “Who Shot Rock & Roll: A Photographic History, 1955 to the Present” will feature 174 photos and 8 videos by 111 photographers and videographers, who not only chronicled the genre, but defined it comprehensively.

Tina Turner, taken 1985, printed June 2009, digital print from 35 mm transparency, 24 x 20 in., Henry Diltz/Morrison Hotel Gallery © Henry Diltz

    Broken into six sections that not only chronicles the history of rock and roll itself, but also the photographers responsible for the visual identity, the sections are: rare and revealing images taken behind the scenes; tender snapshots of young musicians at the beginning of their careers; exhilarating photographs of live performances that display the energy, passion, style and sex appeal of the band on stage; powerful images of the crowds and fans that are often evocative of historic paintings; portraits revealing the soul and creativity, rather than the surface and celebrity, of the musicians; and conceptual images and album covers highlighting the collaborative efforts between the image makers and musicians.

     “No form of music has ever been as integrally tied to the visual arts as rock and roll,” says Director of Curatorial Affairs Barbara Tannenbaum. “Photographers of rock did not just document the musicians and concerts. They helped create identities for the performers and their musical styles, providing visual equivalents as thrilling and entrancing as the music itself. This exhibition reveals, for the first time, the nature of the relationship between photography and rock and roll.”

     Among the works on view are such iconic images as William “Red” Robertson’s erotic 1955 photo of a pelvis-thrusting Elvis Presley that appeared on his first album; The Clash’s London Calling album cover by Pennie Smith depicting Paul Simon smashing his Fender bass guitar; the contact sheet of Bob Gruen’s portrait of John Lennon in a sleeveless New York City T-shirt; Don Hunstein’s photograph of Bob Dylan

Elvis Whispers Softly, 1956, gelatin silver print, 14 x 11 in. © Alfred Wertheimer, The Wertheimer Collection

walking with his girlfriend Suze Rotolo down a snowy Greenwich Village street; David LaChapelle’s image of Lil Kim as a bikini-clad cop; and Anton Corbijn’s shoot of U2 for their Joshua Tree album. The exhibition will also feature photographs by Woodstock photographer Barry Feinstein, Jim Marshall, Ryan McGinley, Linda McCartney, Mark Seliger, and Albert Watson.

     Rarely exhibited photographs include a 1963 photograph by Philip Townsend of the Rolling Stones; an image of James Brown surrounded by female fans shot by actor Dennis Hopper; the working photographs and album cover by Jean-Paul Goude of Grace Jones for Island Life; the full sequence of never-before-exhibited photographs by Ed Caraeff of Jimi Hendrix at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967; the 1976 photograph by Roberta Bayley used on the Ramones first album; Amy Winehouse on her wedding day by Max Vadukul; the four classic 1967 Beatles portraits by Richard Avedon; Ike and Tina Turner at Club Paradise in Memphis in 1962 by the African-American photographer Ernest Withers; and an approximately nine-by-seven-foot tour-de-force by German photographer Andrea Gursky of Madonna performing in 2001.

Ian Dickson, The Ramones, 1977, silver gelatin print, 16 x 20 in., Ian Dickson/

     The music videos by artists in the exhibition are: an 80-image slide show by Henry Diltz, and a rock-and-roll chronology made from actual album covers. Courtesy of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, the following costumes will be on display in the galleries throughout the duration of the exhibition as well: Rust-colored Gold Star Recording Studio jacket worn by Phil Spector; Green/pink sparkly “Hercules” suit worn by Elton John; Short mini-dress made from silver diamonte fabric with black trim, worn by Tina Turner; Purple faux fur vest, black T-shirt and orange pants worn by Fred Schneider of the B-52’s; and Madonna Girlie Show Tour purple velvet stage costume.

     For more information, call 330.376.9185 or see:

Published by on September 2010. Filed under Archives, Art-to-Art Marketplace Guide, At the Museums dept, PaletteBoards Section. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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