Juxtapoz Magazine – Studio to Stage: Music Photography from the Fifties to the Present

ByMary E. Alvarez

Jul 2, 2022 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


A new exhibition at Tempo Gallery meditates on the evolution of music pictures, exploring exchanges across distinctive genres, eras, and geographic places as element of an homage to the past century of new music and the graphic-makers that documented it. The presentation attributes photography by Richard Avedon, Janette Beckman, Adam Cohen, Jem Cohen, Kevin Cummins, Rahim Fortune, Robert Frank, Hiro, Paul Graham, Peter Hujar, Ari Marcopoulos, Itzel Alejandra Martinez, Gordon Parks, Irving Penn, Rankin, Ming Smith, and Nick Waplington. The exhibition is curated by Mark Beasley, curatorial director of Speed Live.

Offered chronologically on the gallery’s first ground, the images in Studio to Stage, which have hardly ever been exhibited jointly, depict legendary musicians of the past 70 years—including Billie Holiday break, Janis Joplin, David Bowie, Bob Dylan, John Cage, The Rolling Stones, The Smiths, Spice Ladies, Beastie Boys, and more—and replicate the “radical continuum,” as termed by author Simon Reynolds, of new music. The photographs on check out seize not only what it signifies to be a performer, but what it suggests to be a member of an audience.

Spanning early jazz, New York hip hop, British punk, European techno, and other musical movements, Studio to Phase examines the techniques that photographers have helped cultivate mythologies all over performers and their respective scenes. The famous venues and audiences of the depicted live shows, festivals and other performances are also key in the tales informed in the photographs on perspective. Among the highlights in the exhibition are Smith’s images of jazz musicians, Marcopoulos’s images of the Beastie Boys and Iggy Pop, and Graham’s photographs of Berlin clubs and raves. Studio to Phase offers the historical past of music as a boundless and continual coalescing of varied sounds and geographies. Amid today’s political and social polarization, the exhibition highlights music’s likely for cultivating connections and enactments of appreciation.


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