Bobby Grossman arrived on the New York scene in the mid-seventies with a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. His first job was assisting Richard Bernstein, the artist known for his covers of Andy Warhol’s Interview. Bernstein’s studio was at the Chelsea Hotel, ground zero for the punk explosion, and the hotel became Grossman’s home. In addition to assisting, Grossman worked as a magazine illustrator, but he became more interested in photographing the scenes he encountered at the Chelsea, at Warhol’s Factory, and C.B.G.B.’s. His ability to get inside scenes and befriend his subjects, and his punky photographic style made his pictures popular with a host of publications – Rolling Stone, Interview, Artforum, The New York Times, Soho Weekly News, The VIllage Voice and many more. His photos were picked up by clients as diverse as MTV and Vogue. He also created promotional pictures for his artist friends, including Blondie, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, The Ramones, Robert Fripp and Talking Heads (for whom he shot the cover of Psycho Killer.)
Grossman was on the scene at the punk clubs and Glenn O’ Brien’s TV Party, the weekly cable show David Letterman called “The greatest show ever” where he was the official photographer. In 1981, Grossman was featured in the seminal “New York/New Wave” exhibition curated by Diego Cortez at P.S. 1 Institute for the Arts and Colab’s legendary “Time Square Show.” Since then he has exhibited his work in museums and galleries around the world. In 1994, he exhibited in “Beat Art” at the Grey Gallery at New York University.
In 1996-1997 Bobby Grossman and Roberta Bayley curated the traveling photo exhibition “The Cool and the Crazy – Images of Punk” which included over 40 photographers including Robert Mapplethorpe, Gerard Malanga and Andy Warhol.
Video produced by Viv-G
© Viv-G | New York, 2017