Dear Shaded Viewers,
I had the great pleasure of meeting Jeannette Montgomery Barron a few years ago in Paris at Outsider Art at the James Barron Art exhibition. We met through Paul and Renee Riccardo Laster, my neighbours when I lived in the West Village in NYC in the 80’s. I am also the very proud owner of CINDY SHERMAN Contact, also published by NJG Studio. That edition is a work of art and even though I have yet to see the limited edition of JMB, I have no doubt it too is a treasure.
Jeannette Montgomery Barron is a photographer who is known for her portraits of artists, musicians, filmmakers, painters, fashion designers, publishers, actors, models and writers. These renowned personalities from the most exciting era of New York City underground culture – the 1980’s- a time when the young and indomitable flocked downtown in search of places to work and live among like-minded collaborators. These players worked together, played together, made their own rules and changed our culture, as we know it, forever.
Jeannette was invited by Bruno Bischofberger in December 1984 to photograph Jean-Michel Basquiat at his Great Jones Street studio in New York City. Bruno Bischofberger is a Swiss art dealer who played an instrumental role in launching the career of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Bischofberger discovered Basquiat’s work in the early 1980s and immediately recognized his talent. He became Basquiat’s primary dealer, representing him in Europe and Asia and helping to secure major exhibitions for his work. Jeannette did two sittings with only a birdcage, a chair, and an unfinished painting as props. Jeannette shot three rolls of 120 film, 36 images – layering light and shadows in her signature black and white. I love the quote by Francesco Clemente: “Jeannette Montgomery Barron is an elegant woman and an elegant photographer. She conveys the widest range of expressivity with the minimum amount of means. The secret of her good luck is that she travels light”. Jeannette would later return to photograph both Basquiat and Warhol – again shooting 36 frames, during their infamous painting collaboration at The Factory, in the spring of 1985.
JMB. brings together the complete sittings from 1984-85, including four contact sheets, featuring 31 large format images, plus a previously unseen artwork by Basquiat.
JMB is available in Limited Edition and 100 Strictly Limited Edition, signed and numbered by Jeannette Montgomery Barron with an Introduction by Francesco Clemente. The 64 pages are encased in a teal blue hardback cover, with ebony de-bossed JMB foiled titles.