Bob Gruen, born in New York in 1945, is one of the most respected and well-known photographers in rock and roll. He has captured the music scene for forty years in photographs that have gained worldwide recognition.He began photographing rock stars with Bob Dylan and served as John Lennon’s personal photographer during his time in New York City.
As chief photographer for Rock Scene Magazine in the 70s, Bob specialized in behind the scenes photo features. He toured extensive with major rock acts such as Led Zeppelin, The Who, David Bowie, Tina Turner, Elton John, Aerosmith, Kiss and Alice Cooper as well as with the emerging punk and new wave bands including the New York Dolls, Sex Pistols, Clash, Ramones, Patti Smith Group and Blondie. As an active freelancer for other magazines like Cream, Melody Maker and Rolling Stone among others.
Bob’s photographs have appeared on the covers and filled the pages of many of these seminal publications capturing the whole scene; on stage, offstage, on tour, at parties, at play, at home and relaxing.
His unassuming behind-the-lens figure embedded himself with rock bands so deeply that in some cases he was regarded as a virtual member.
While visiting John and Yoko’s recording session at the Record Plant in NYC, Mick joined John and Yoko behind a piano to sing along on a song Yoko had just written and they seemed to all have a lot of fun together.
"For me, rock 'n' roll is all about freedom. It's about the freedom to express your feelings very loudly in public."
"I try to capture that moment of freedom, that moment when everybody's yelling 'Yay!' and nobody's thinking about paying the rent."
— Bob Gruen
Rock´n Roll Exposed
of Bob Gruen
By Don Letts
From Led Zeppelin to The Rolling Stones, Elvis to Madonna, Bob Dylan to Bob Marley, John Lennon to Johnny Rotten, Bob Gruen has captured half a century of music through the eye of a lens. In this landmark documentary, Grammy award-winning filmmaker Don Letts reveals the stories behind some of the most famous rock 'n' roll photographs of all time. 'Rock 'N' Roll Exposed' features interviews with Iggy Pop, Debbie Harry, Yoko Ono, Alice Cooper, Billie Joe Armstrong and many more.
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Exhibitions by Bob Gruen
Recent Show, 2021
Museum of Image and Sound | MIS-SP
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Right Place - Right Time
New York City
October - 2020
Right Time Right Place
The Life of a Rock and Roll Photographer
An action-packed memoir that takes readers front row, backstage, and on the road with rock and roll's hardest-working photographer Bob Gruen is one of the most well-known and respected photographers in rock and roll.
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The Teenage Bedroom
Teenage Bedroom Installation at San Francisco "Rockers" Exhibit. SF, 2019
Bob Gruen’s Teenage Bedroom was shown at MoMA’s exhibition "Looking At Music: Side 2" (2009) which explored the creative exchange between musicians and artists in New York City in the 1970’s and 1980’s. The work consists of walls covered with band posters, newsprint articles with images, and maga- zine covers, all featuring Gruen’s rock photos, to resemble the typical bedroom decor of a teenage rock fan.
The Vintage Archive
The Music Photo Gallery is pleased to announce its upcoming participation in Photo London 2019 - on of the most important inter- national photography event, a world-class photography fair and a catalyst for London’s dynamic photography community - which will take place from May-15th to May-19th at the Somerset House, London, UK.
From the capital’s major museums, to its auction houses, galleries large and small, right into the burgeoning creative communities in the East End and South London, Photo London harnesses the city’s outstanding creative talent and brings together the world’s leading photographers, curators, exhibitors, dealers and the public to celebrate photography, the medium of our time.
Among the leading selected galleries worldwide, The Music Photo Gallery will be featuring Rock Seen: Vintage Photographs by Bob Gruen at the booth F12 - Main section. This show presents a selection of Bob’s rarely seen vintage prints chronicling the music scene from the 1960s and 70s until the present. Starting with a rare image of Bob Dylan going electric at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965 to touring with Ike and Tina Turner in 1971 and then on to the early days at CBGB and Max’s Kansas City where he made classic images of Blondie, The Ramones, The New York Dolls, Suicide, DEVO, Television and Lou Reed, Bob has captured some of the most memorable photographs of rock and roll’s icons and iconoclasts.
Alongside to the photographs that capture the raw edge of rock, the show also includes touching photographs of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, who Bob worked with closely as their personal photographer from 1972 until Lennon’s death. He captured not only their working life but many private moments as well. His iconic image of John Lennon wearing a New York City T-Shirt is part of the permanent collection of The National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Yoko Ono writes that “Bobs magical photos ... present a kaleidoscope of John’[s]...New York Period. It is beautiful, clear, and truthful. I know, I was there.”
As chief photographer for Rock Scene magazine and an active freelancer for magazines like Creem, Melody Maker and Rolling Stone, Bob’s photographs have appeared on the covers and filled the pages of many of these seminal publications; capturing the whole scene, on stage, offstage, on tour, at parties, at play, at home and relaxing. It’s all here, the look, the feel, the magic that’s Rock and Roll.
Short video talks
by Kapow for I-sat Channel
Upcoming Fair 2021
Grand Palais. Paris, France
11 - 14 November, 2021
Bob Gruen | Solo Show
Curated by Julien Frydman
Cameras, Chaos And Cognac: How Bob Gruen Photographed The Spirit Of Rock 'N' Roll.
His Photos Are Proof: He’s With the Band
Oct. 12, 2011
Beatlemania at Bob Gruen show
By PageSix.com Staff July 8, 2013
Capturing Culture for future generations
Bob Gruen tocó la trompeta en The Clash
y retrató a la realeza del rock
Rock Seen: Vintage Photographs by Bob Gruen
8 pictures / 8 short Videos telling the making of
Lennon, Led zeppelin and The Sex Pistols in pictures
Rock & Roll Photographer Bob Gruen:
A Legend’s Encounters from John Lennon to Keith Richards,
Gruen’s lens captured heir spirit and charisma.
Photographer Bob Gruen shows photos, and tells stories,
from a lifetime in rock
Bob Gruen goes behind the lens