Press Contact: Helen Dalrymple (202) 707-1940
December 15, 1995
Jazz Era Photographs by William Gottlieb on View at Kennedy Center
Gottlieb To Speak January 22
An exhibition of photographs by jazz photographer and journalist William P. Gottlieb is now on view in the Performing Arts Library of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, from noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. It will remain on view through February.
Mr. Gottlieb's photographs, taken between 1938 and 1948, cover one of the richest periods in the history of jazz. During that period, most of the musicians who had established the style of early jazz were still active, together with the leaders of the swing era and the younger musicians who were creating bebop on New York's legendary 52nd Street. The photographs were acquired by the Library of Congress in April 1995, through the generosity of the Ira and Leonore S. Gershwin Fund.
Included in the exhibition are portraits of jazz greats such as Sarah Vaughan, Art Tatum, Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker and Theolonious Monk.
On Monday, Jan. 22 Mr. Gotlieb will give a talk about his career as a photographer. Highlighted will be his relationships with the performers featured in the exhibition. There will be an opportunity to buy his book, The Golden Age of Jazz, and have it autographed following the lecture. The presentation is free and will be held from 6 to 7pm in the Performing Arts Library.
Mr. Gottlieb first worked in jazz as a columnist for The Washington Post, and then later for Down Beat Magazine, among other publications. When his employers could not provide a photographer to follow him on assignments, he bought a press camera, and, through his own efforts, became a portrait photographer of the first rank.
Exhibitions of Mr. Gottlieb's work have appeared in nearly 100 institutions throughout the world, from the Navio Museum in Osaka, Japan, to the Museum of Modern Art in Stockholm, Sweden. His photographs have appeared in books, magazines and newspapers, as well as on posters and T-shirts. They were also the basis for the portraits of four jazz artists who have appeared on U.S. commemorative postage stamps.
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