the Backroom

The Unfiltered Charm of Jet’s Beauties of the Week…The New Yorker

by Patrick Pearse on June 26, 2024  |  3 Comments »

The New Yorker published a fine story on Black is Beautiful: JET Beauties of the Week, published by powerHouse Books featuring LaMonte McLemore‘s photography and edited by Chris Murray. Black is Beautiful also features essays by Sylvia Flanagan, Jayne Kennedy, Mickalene Thomas, and Chris Murray.

In Jennifer Wilson‘s compelling story in The New Yorker, she writes that, “McLemore knew to make the images look as natural as the beauties he was tasked with shooting.”


At any point in the day, I can open my closet, pull out a swimsuit, squeeze into it, pose for a selfie in my full-length mirror, and broadcast the image to the world. It’s easy to take for granted just how much the Internet has democratized the thirst trap; with social media, we can each be a part-time model and beach bunny for all seasons. But when I was growing up, in the early two-thousands, the only photographs of young women in bathing suits which I regularly saw were in the summer issues of the teen magazines that arrived on my doorstep. The bikini-clad models on those pages were impossibly thin; they were also, with rare exceptions, white. It was only in 1997 that Sports Illustrated featured a solo Black model on the cover of its iconic swimsuit issue, with Tyra Banks baring her washboard abs and breasts that nearly spill out of her top, in a red-and-pink polka-dot two-piece. So much for representation.

In those days, I knew of only one way that a mere mortal could be pictured in a bikini for paying subscribers. It was to submit a picture to Jet, a weekly magazine for Black news and entertainment. Each issue included an ad for “beautiful models between the ages of 18-25,” along with instructions to fill out a “coupon” with contact information and “a current snapshot of yourself in a bathing suit.” If the magazine liked your photograph, they would connect you with a professional photographer. From Jet’s inception, in 1951, until the magazine ceased its print operation, in 2014, it published pictures of these women in a column called “Beauty of the Week.” “Every issue of the magazine showcases one of the country’s most beautiful, shapely and radiant Nubian princesses,” Jet boasted, referring to the ordinary women of extraordinary confidence—nurses, paralegals, college students, post-office workers—who posed for the magazine. Though the text was essentially decorative, their professions were noted, alongside their hobbies. In Paul Beatty’s “The Sellout,” the narrator’s mother was a Jet Beauty of the Week, and all he knows about her is what was included in the small text alongside her “curvy expanse of thighs and lip gloss”; namely, that she was a student from Key Biscayne “who enjoys biking, photography and poetry.”

In an essay, the filmmaker Malcolm D. Lee (“The Best Man,” “Girls Trip”) recalled ripping out the Jet “Beauty of the Week” page and putting it up in his locker. His white private-school classmates gave him grief. They “would say, ‘They’re fat.’ I was like, ‘What are you talking about? That was when I started to understand the different standards of beauty,’ ” Lee wrote. The women who graced page 43 (the “Beauty of the Week” column was typically on page 43) were thin, but curvier than a typical model, and, for decades, their measurements—almost always hourglass—were listed alongside their photos. On their bodies, you could spot faded stretch marks, on their teeth lipstick stains, on their faces an endearing “Am I doing this right?” expression. They kept their wedding rings on. These were real women, not fantasies. Former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick’s mother—a part-time shopgirl at Saks Fifth Avenue—was a Jet Beauty of the Week (she borrowed clothes from work for the shoot).

A new book, “Black Is Beautiful: JET Beauties of the Week” (powerHouse Books), collects some of the pictures that LaMonte McLemore, a vocalist and a founding member for the psychedelic soul band the 5th Dimension, took for Jet in the forty-plus years he worked for the magazine as a freelance photographer. Jet, which had more than a million subscribers, was the saucy little sister of Ebony. Both magazines were part of the publishing tycoon (and fashion mogul) John H. Johnson’s Chicago-based Black media empire. Ebony launched, in 1945, as an African American answer to Life magazine, catering to the tastes of upwardly mobile Black readers. Jet was less buttoned up. In 1975, the magazine published an interview with Pam Grier on the subject of how “it takes more than one man to satisfy [her],” plus an update on her rumored romance with Freddie Prinze. Jet did not feel the need to present a prudish image of Black people to counteract white stereotypes about their hypersexuality. Jet was for Black people who wanted to look at other Black people. In fact, one of its best-known rubrics was a listing of every time a Black character was going to appear on television week by week. Jetwas also not like the respectable Ebony, but it was still respected, especially when, in 1955, it became the first outlet to publish the open-casket photographs of Emmett Till. McLemore, the first African American photographer hired by Harper’s Bazaar, was so proud to have his name associated with Jet that he squeezed in “Beauty of the Week” shoots between 5th Dimension tour stops.

There was an amateurish chaos to the “Beauty of the Week” photos that made them feel charged with erotic possibility. These were “around the way” girls, as the LL Cool J song goes. (The rapper wrote in his 1997 memoir, “I Make My Own Rules,” that he decorated his childhood bedroom with “posters of Bruce Lee and, later, Run-D.M.C. and Jetmagazine’s Beauty of the Week.”) They looked like someone whom you might catch a glimpse of at the Jersey Shore one day. “Hey, did I see you in Jet?” was a pickup line someone once tried on my aunt.

Though a professional photographer, McLemore knew to make the images look as natural as the beauties he was tasked with shooting. In one of his photos, a woman named Darolyn, clad in a red bikini and matching leg warmers, opts for an asymmetrical pose that makes her chest look lopsided. Another woman named Karen, wearing a gold necklace spelling out her name and a peach crochet bikini, blows soap bubbles from a plastic bottle of the kind I remember buying at the local dollar store in the summer months.

Many of the women were self-styled, donning the sultrier version of their Sunday best. In one photo, a woman named Denise pairs a tiger-print bikini with costume jewelry and pink acrylic nails. Tasha, whose hobby is listed as skydiving, has applied metallic silver eyeshadow that clashes with her gold earrings and matching bikini. When Jet did shoot professional models or actresses for the column, the women were still relatively dressed down. In 1971, years before Grier made the gossip pages of Jet or landed her signature roles in Blaxploitation films, she was an up-and-coming actress who posed for the “Beauty of the Week” column at the urging of her team. She later reflected on the image for ESPN’s Andscape blog, complaining about the shoot’s lack of niceties: “I was ashy, no makeup, my hair was all over the place. I didn’t even have polish on my toenails or my fingernails, c’mon.”

But the lack of polish was what gave Jet Beauties of the Week their special charm. By now, we are all too schooled in the art of posing to reproduce the effect. In the age of the smartphone camera, most of us know our good angles. We can blur away our imperfections using an Instagram filter. The raw appeal of Jet’s erstwhile models remains unrivalled. “Black Is Beautiful” captures the quality that made these women most appealing—their confidence that anyone with eyes would want to look at them, au naturel.


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Gered Mankowitz: Rare and Unseen

by Chris Murray on June 19, 2024  |  1 Comment »

Gered Mankowitz took among the finest photographs of all time of the Rolling Stones. This one of Mick Jagger in the recording studio in 1965 is one of my favorites. Mankowitz’s photographs are always featured at Govinda Gallery.

The Stones are now touring the United States!


Mick Jagger, 1965. Photo by Gered Mankowitz.


Gered has a new book just published by Welbeck Publishing, and it features a foreword by the one and only Keith Richards, and a brilliant afterword by Gered’s longtime friend and genius former manager and producer of the Rolling Stones, Andrew Loog Oldham.




Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Mickalene Thomas, Brittney Griner, and “Black is Beautiful”

by Chris Murray on May 29, 2024  |  Comments Off on Mickalene Thomas, Brittney Griner, and “Black is Beautiful”

The New York Times Magazine published a cover story on Brittney Griner and her ordeal in a Russian prison. Our favorite artist Mickalene Thomas was hired by the New York Times to take the photographs of Brittney for the cover story. They are remarkable images. Brittany’s story is also remarkable and is told in her just-published book Coming Home (Knopf).


Photograph by Mickalene Thomas.


Photograph by Mickalene Thomas.

Thomas’ exhibition, Mickalene Thomas: All About Love, just opened at The Broad museum in Los Angeles last week and continues through September 29th before touring to the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and the Hayward Gallery in London.


Le Déjeuner Sur L’Herbe Les Trois Femme Noires D’Aprés Picasso (2022) by Mickalene Thomas. Rhinestones and acrylic paint on canvas mounted on wood panel.


Mickalene also contributed an essay to LaMonte McLemore‘s recently-published book, Black is Beautiful: JET Beauties of the Week (powerHouse). Mickalene writes about McLemore’s work that, “His images served as a challenge to the limiting and stereotypical beauty standards of his time, and celebrated the natural beauty and strength of Black women. As an artist, I find McLemore’s groundbreaking work to be a continued source of inspiration for me.”


Photograph by LaMonte McLemore.


Black is Beautiful (powerHouse).

Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Happy Birthday Donovan! with a special shoutout from Sammy Hagar

by Chris Murray on May 10, 2024  |  1 Comment »

Today is my friend Donovan‘s birthday. Last week, Variety Magazine published a story on Sammy Hagar, where he talked about Donovan’s influence on him. “Around the time of Dylan, I also got turned onto Donovan and to be honest, I was more of a Donovan guy than a Dylan guy. Donovan had the same feelings as I had about lost love and had a romantic streak I identified with. I actually cut a version of his song ‘Young Girl Blues’ on my first solo album. I’ve met him and I still love his music. He’s a great poet.”


Donovan, 1969, Los Angeles. Photo by Baron Wolman.

This is my favorite photo of Donovan, taken by one of my favorite photographers, Baron Wolman. Donovan was the first Rolling Stone interview on November 9, 1967. On its cover, Rolling Stone said “DONOVAN: An Incredible Rolling Stone interview with this manchild of magic.” Happy birthday, Donovan!


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Daniel Kramer Bringing It All Back Home, 1932-2024

by Chris Murray on May 7, 2024  |  1 Comment »

Bob Dylan, New York City, 1965. Photo by Daniel Kramer.


Daniel Kramer‘s photographs of Bob Dylan were a primary inspiration when I systematically began to champion significant photographs documenting musical artists. I remember so well when Daniel’s book, Bob Dylan, was published in 1967. I was a sophomore at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. Bringing It All Back Home and Highway 61 Revisited had both been released in 1965. Those two albums changed my life with Dylan combining his poetry/songs with electric music. I would sit listening to both of those recordings while looking at the images on the album covers. They seemed to me at the time to be simultaneously enigmatic and revelatory. Worlds opened up to me listening to those two recordings. And Daniel Kramer just happened to take the photographs on the covers of both of those seminal albums.

It was a great pleasure and honor for me to “discover” Daniel Kramer and present the first exhibition of his Bob Dylan photos at Govinda Gallery in 1999. Just a few months later, I brought that same exhibition to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. Daniel was so pleased to see his work exhibited in those venues. I also presented his work at Paul Allen’s Experience Music Project Museum (now known as the Museum of Pop Culture) in Seattle in 2001, and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music in 2005 . I went on to work with Daniel for two decades, continuously showing his work at Govinda Gallery. He was a master of the medium.

Harrison Smith at the Washington Post wrote a wonderful obituary about Daniel Kramer, who passed away last week. I present that story here below.



Kramer captured Dylan’s shift from folk to rock, taking pictures that were featured on the covers of “Bringing It All Back Home” and “Highway 61 Revisited.”

By: Harrison Smith

Daniel Kramer’s photograph of Bob Dylan and Sally Grossman, the wife of the musician’s manager, was used for the cover of Dylan’s 1965 album “Bringing It All Back Home.” (Daniel Kramer/© Estate of Daniel Kramer/Staley-Wise Gallery, New York)


Daniel Kramer, a photographer whose strikingly intimate portraits of Bob Dylan captured the singer-songwriter during a pivotal year in popular music, tracing his evolution from a cheery, tousle-haired folk act to an enigmatic, sunglass-clad rock star, died April 29 in Melville, N.Y. He was 91.

His death, at an assisted-living center, was confirmed by one of his nephews, Brian Bereck. He did not give a specific cause.

Mr. Kramer, a freelance photographer who had apprenticed under Diane Arbus and Life magazine stalwart Philippe Halsman, had no idea who Dylan was until he saw him perform “The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll” on “The Steve Allen Show” in 1964. “I hadn’t heard that kind of fresh poetry in years,” he told the Boston Globe much later. “When he was finished, I said, ‘I want to photograph him.’”

It would take six months of begging and pleading, including calls and letters to Dylan’s manager Albert Grossman, before he got his chance.

Invited to come up to Woodstock, N.Y., for a one-hour shoot in August 1964, Mr. Kramer managed to stay for more than five hours, photographing the singer-songwriter at Grossman’s home (climbing trees, swinging on the porch, watching a movie) and at a cafe where Dylan had lunch and played chess. “It was like a courtship,” he recalled. “I guess I passed the test.”

Photos from Mr. Kramer’s first day with Dylan, at a cafe in Woodstock, N.Y. The pictures were featured in Mr. Kramer’s 2018 book “Bob Dylan: A Year and a Day.” (Daniel Kramer/Taschen)


For the next year, Mr. Kramer served as Dylan’s unofficial staff photographer, taking pictures of the musician at home, in the studio, on the road and in concert. His photographs — staged and spontaneous, in color and black-and-white — chronicled a period when one of folk music’s most renowned figures set aside his acoustic guitar and embraced a high-voltage sound, horrifying traditionalists while charting a new course for blues-based rock.

“There are other great photos of Bob Dylan, of course, but Dan Kramer’s pictures — at a certain place and time, and in the depth that he did it — are unparalleled,” said Washington gallery owner Chris Murray, who organized the first exhibitions of Mr. Kramer’s work, in a 2001 interview with American Photo magazine.

Like Alfred Wertheimer, who photographed a young Elvis Presley, and Astrid Kirchherr, who took pictures of the Beatles during their early days in Hamburg, Mr. Kramer captured his subject on the verge of breakout success. Many of his pictures revealed a playful side of the musician, wearing a top hat and sneering like the Mad Hatter outside Town Hall in Philadelphia; pretending to iron the hair of singer-songwriter Joan Baez, his girlfriend at the time; or mugging for the camera with Johnny Cash, who visited him backstage at a show in New Jersey.

Photos from Mr. Kramer’s 2018 book “Bob Dylan: A Year and a Day” show the singer-songwriter in the studio in 1965, the year he recorded the landmark albums “Bringing It All Back Home” and “Highway 61 Revisited.” (Daniel Kramer/Taschen)


Others were more carefully choreographed and helped establish Dylan’s new public image. For the musician’s 1965 album “Bringing It All Back Home,” his first to incorporate electric instruments, Mr. Kramer orchestrated a cryptic cover photo showing Dylan sitting with a cat in his lap, surrounded by an eclectic mix of books, magazines, albums and artifacts, including a fallout shelter sign. A woman lounged in a red jumpsuit behind him, cigarette in hand. Adding to the mystery was a blurry swirl around the edge of the picture, a double exposure effect that Mr. Kramer created by building a rig that allowed him to rotate the camera.

“I wanted it to feel like the universe was moving around him,” Mr. Kramer explained.

The image was “as striking as Dylan’s new electric sound,” wrote British music critic Barney Hoskyns, assessing its impact in his 2016 book “Small Town Talk.” Fans investigated each detail, asking after the origins of a clown collage on the wall (made by Dylan himself from cut glass) and conspiratorially wondering whether the mystery woman wasn’t Dylan himself, donning drag. (In fact it was Sally Grossman, his manager’s wife.)

Mr. Kramer received a Grammy nomination for the photo, which was credited as a precursor to conceptual album covers like the photo collage used for the Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”

Dylan used Mr. Kramer’s 1965 photo for the cover of his album “Highway 61 Revisited.” (Daniel Kramer/© Estate of Daniel Kramer/Staley-Wise Gallery, New York)


He went on to photograph the cover for Dylan’s acclaimed follow-up album, “Highway 61 Revisited,” which was released later that year and opened with “Like a Rolling Stone,” the singer’s first Top 10 hit. The cover photo showed Dylan wearing a Triumph motorcycle T-shirt under a jacket, sitting on a Manhattan stoop with his friend Bob Neuwirth partly visible behind him.

Unlike the cover for “Bringing It All Back Home,” the picture came together in a matter of minutes when the group arrived outside Grossman’s apartment. “Bob sat down and I thought it could be a cover — I knew he was trying to give me something,” Mr. Kramer told the Globe. “I asked my assistant for a camera and bing bing bing — done. Fifteen or 20 minutes. I think Bob lent himself to my ideas. I had to come up with these ideas pretty fast, day after day, and put it all together. Give Bob a stage to work on; give me a palette to draw from.”

Mr. Kramer said that after a year and a day of photographing Dylan, culminating with a rowdy concert at Forest Hills in New York City (some fans booed and shouted “we want the old Dylan” after he played his new electric songs), he and the musician went their separate ways. By his account, he and Dylan remained friendly, although there appeared to be bad blood for a time, as Dylan’s management team unsuccessfully sought an injunction to block the release of Mr. Kramer’s 1967 photo book “Bob Dylan,” published by the Citadel Press.

The portrait on the right, from Mr. Kramer’s 2018 book “Bob Dylan: A Year and a Day,” was used for the cover of the Dylan compilation “Biograph.” (Daniel Kramer/Taschen)


The rift seemed to have healed by 1985, when one of Mr. Kramer’s early portraits of Dylan was used for the musician’s “Biograph” box set.

Mr. Kramer continued to work as a freelance photographer, taking pictures of subjects that included author Norman Mailer, for Look magazine; former president Harry S. Truman, for Holiday; presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, for Fortune; and Mario Puzo, the author of “The Godfather,” for the cover of New York. He also found work in the corporate world, taking pictures that appeared in annual reports for Morgan Stanley.

But he maintained a special fondness for his year with Dylan, which he credited with transforming his approach to photography, leading him to take a more open-ended approach to shoots, and with introducing him to a joyous new artistic milieu.

While accompanying Dylan to Woodstock’s Cafe Espresso one night in 1964, he found himself participating in a jam session with a group that included Baez, Peter Yarrow, and Richard and Mimi Fariña. “I played the spoons,” he said, recalling a rare moment when he put aside his camera. “I was so thrilled. It was one of the great nights of my life.”

Mr. Kramer and Dylan in New York City in 1965. (Daniel Kramer/Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles)


The oldest of three children, Daniel Kramer was born in Brooklyn on May 19, 1932. His mother had an administrative job at what is now Brookdale hospital, and his father was a dockworker and amateur filmmaker who inspired Mr. Kramer’s interest in photography.

“By age 14, I had a one-boy show at the junior high school,” he told the New York Times. “I became a professional when someone offered me $5 to take a photo. I remember feeling embarrassed to take so much money for something that came so easily to me.”

Mr. Kramer served a stint in the Army’s Military Police Corps and studied at Brooklyn College. He worked as an assistant to Arbus and her then-husband, actor and photographer Allan Arbus, before spending three years with Halsman, who taught him how to work with celebrities (Mr. Kramer once went into the ring with boxer Muhammad Ali for a photo shoot) and to print his own photographs. Halsman also enlisted Mr. Kramer for projects like the “Jump Book,” a 1959 collection of portraits showing celebrities and statesmen leaping into the air. “One of my jobs was to wash the bottoms of Marilyn Monroe’s feet after each jump,” Mr. Kramer recalled.

By 1964, Mr. Kramer had a Manhattan studio of his own. He was aided for decades by his wife and collaborator, Arline Cunningham, a music-industry veteran he met one summer in the Hamptons as a house guest of her boss, singer-songwriter Judy Collins. Cunningham died in 2016.

Mr. Kramer in 2012 at the Cité de la Musique in Paris, where his work was featured in a Dylan exhibition. (Marina Helli/AFP/Getty Images)


Mr. Kramer, who leaves no immediate survivors, was deeply private, resisting calls to create a website or promote his work on social media. But he received renewed attention after Murray, the owner of Govinda Gallery in Georgetown, organized his first shows in 1999, curating exhibitions of Mr. Kramer’s Dylan pictures at Govinda and at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

His photos were later featured in exhibitions in Amsterdam, Havana, London and Los Angeles and were acquired by institutions including the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. A limited-edition book of his work, “Bob Dylan: A Year and a Day,” was published by Taschen in 2018.

That success was difficult for Mr. Kramer to imagine when he first pitched his Dylan photos in 1964, showing them to an editor at Pageant, a now-defunct national magazine, the year before Dylan rose to superstardom.

“The editor said, ‘I don’t need another scruffy kid with a guitar,’” he recalled. “But two weeks later, he called me and said, ‘Do you still have those pictures of that guitar player?’ Let’s look at them again. I have a 15-year-old daughter, and she said if I don’t publish them I’m crazy.’”

Dylan at the New York City restaurant O’Henry’s in 1965. (Daniel Kramer/© Estate of Daniel Kramer/Staley-Wise Gallery, New York)


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Mickalene Thomas, Black is Beautiful, and the New York Times

by Fabiola Castro on May 1, 2024  |  1 Comment »

This past Sunday, the New York Times published a feature story on our favorite contemporary artist, Mickalene Thomas, and her first major international tour, beginning with an exhibition at The Broad museum in Los Angeles, which opens on May 25th. Mickalene contributed a brilliant essay to Black is Beautiful (powerHouse Books) featuring LaMonte McLemore‘s photographs for JET magazine’s “Beauty of the Week” feature, which was edited by Govinda Gallery director, Chris Murray, with an introduction by Murray. Also featured are essays by Jayne Kennedy and Sylvia Flanagan.


JET magazine’s “Beauty of the Week” is one of the main inspirations –and indeed a direct reference and source material– for Mickalene’s work on the Black female figure.  In her essay for Black is Beautiful, Mickalene praises McLemore’s contribution to the celebration of Black women through his “Beauty of the Week” photos, stating that, “McLemore’s work was both groundbreaking as it challenged mainstream beauty standards and simultaneously celebrated the natural beauty of Black women. His photographs provided a platform for the concepts that have remained at the core of my work, such as the celebration of Black women as Icons.”


Mickalene Thomas. Photo by Amy Harrity for the New York Times.


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Poet Laureate Randall Jarrell As Seen By Ted Russell

by Chris Murray on April 23, 2024  |  1 Comment »

Randall Jarrell, Washington, DC, 1957. Photo by Ted Russell.


I was speaking with former LIFE photographer Ted Russell, whose extraordinary photographs of Bob Dylan from 1961 to 1964 were recently exhibited at the Bob Dylan Center in Tulsa, OK, when he told me about his photographs of Randall Jarrell. Randall Jarrell was the 11th Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress—a position that now bears the title Poet Laureate of the United States. It is with great pleasure I share Ted Russell’s extraordinary portrait of the great American poet.

Ted Russell’s photographs are available through Govinda Gallery.


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

Elvis at 21 Event on April 24th in Georgetown at 1310 Kitchen

by Patrick Pearse on April 17, 2024  |  1 Comment »

Lisa Marie Presley holding a copy of Elvis at 21 with Chris Murray, who co-authored Elvis at 21 with photographer Alfred Wertheimer.

“Elvis at 21” is coming up on April 24th! Get your tickets now to make sure you don’t miss this awesome evening! Noted curator Chris Murray, who co-authored the book “Elvis at 21” which showcases photos of Elvis from the pivotal year 1956, will present photographs from the book. The night will also include Elvis’s favorite foods and a signature cocktail courtesy of our own Chef Jenn Crovato! Tickets are limited so register now!




Category: Blog, The Back Room   

John Sinclair, David Fenton, and John & Yoko

by Chris Murray on April 10, 2024  |  2 Comments »

John Lennon and Yoko Ono at the “Free John Sinclair” rally. Ann Harbor, MI, December 10, 1971. © David Fenton


The New York Times published activist John Sinclair‘s obituary this past Sunday. They illustrated the obituary with David Fenton‘s photograph of John Lennon and Yoko Ono performing at a concert and rally in Ann Harbor, Michigan with 15,000 supporters of Sinclair, who had been jailed with a sentence of 10 years in prison for sharing two joints with an undercover police officer. A few days after the rally, the Michigan Supreme Court announced that it was reviewing the case. Sinclair’s conviction was overturned after almost 2.5 years in jail. Sinclair also managed the Detroit rock band, The MC5.

Govinda Gallery just presented David Fenton’s remarkable photographs from the late 60s and early 70s in Havana, Cuba at the Contemporary Art Center Wifredo Lam. That exhibition was Govinda Gallery’s ninth cultural exchange with our Caribbean neighbor.

John Sinclair with his daughters as he is released from his cell block, December 13, 1971. © Hugh Grannum, Detroit Free Press


David Fenton’s photographs are available through Govinda Gallery.


Category: Blog, The Back Room   

1310 Kitchen in Georgetown Presents Elvis at 21 with Chris Murray

by Patrick Pearse on April 3, 2024  |  3 Comments »

On April 24th, Govinda Gallery Director, Chris Murray, will be presenting an audio/visual presentation of Alfred Wertheimer‘s remarkable photographs of Elvis Presley in 1956. The venue is at the 1310 Kitchen & Bar in the Georgetown Inn. Murray co-authored with Wertheimer Elvis at 21 (Insight Editions, 2023) and is the curator of Wertheimer’s museum and gallery exhibitions. Presley biographer, Peter Guralnick, writes, “Alfred Wertheimer got great pictures. Like Elvis, by embracing spontaneity, by prizing feeling over mere technique, he found something new in familiar forms, and the result is work that can stand gloriously on its own, unaffected by the eddying tides of fashion of the shifting sands of time.”

Chef Jenn Crovato will be creating a menu inspired by Elvis’ favorite foods. A good time will be had by all. Registration details are below and all are invited. Copies of Elvis at 21 will be available after the presentation.




The Kiss, Mosque Theater, Richmond, Virginia.


Kneeling at the Mosque.


First Arrival, New York City.


The Elvis Stare.


Category: Blog, The Back Room   
© 2008 Govinda Gallery.  Proudly powered by WordPress.  Website Design by Cary Scott Additional design by Anna Jacoby.