Herb Ritts: The Rock Portraits Opens March 13 at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum

herb_bannerNever-Before-Seen Photographs and Original Video Footage Featured in New Exhibit on Revolutionary Photographer Herb Ritts 

CLEVELAND (MAR. 3, 2015) – The work of renowned photographer Herb Ritts (1952-2002) will be featured in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s newest exhibit, Herb Ritts: The Rock Portraits, which will open on Fri., Mar. 13, 2015. Presented in collaboration with the Herb Ritts Foundation, the exhibit includes 30 never-before-seen photographs, original video footage, contact sheets with Ritts’ red-pencil markings, new video interviews and other well-known portraits from the revolutionary photographer and filmmakers’ collection.

Ritts was a part of the first movement of still photographers who became directors of music videos and television commercials. Alongside Ritts’ bold portraits, visitors will see new exclusive interviews by the Rock Hall with Chris Isaak sharing what it was like to film the famously seductive “Wicked Game” music video and k.d. lang recalling her groundbreaking Vanity Fair cover shoot with supermodel Cindy Crawford.

The Rock Portraits exhibit will also include firsthand accounts from musicians on what it was like to work with Ritts, a sampling of his award-winning music videos, and interactive stations including a collection of album covers he shot. Visitors will also be able to photograph themselves in a backdrop from one of Ritts’ most famous beach photos.

Greg Harris, president and CEO of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, says “We were given unprecedented access to the vast Ritts archives and the result is stunning. This provocative exhibition is a testament to the visceral power of both photography and rock and roll.  It is not to be missed.”

“Having an exhibit that showcases the world of rock through his inimitable lens, capturing rare, unguarded moments with some of the biggest names in music history is a first for the Herb Ritts Foundation and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is the perfect place for it to debut,” adds Mark McKenna, Executive Director of the Herb Ritts Foundation.

Ritts photographed some of the world’s biggest music stars. He made startlingly intimate portraits that showed artists as the world had never seen them. Never-before-seen photographs of artists that will be featured in The Rock Portraits exhibit include:

  • Joan Baez
  • Bjork
  • David Bowie
  • Jackson Browne
  • Tracy Chapman
  • Cher
  • Bob Dylan
  • Janet Jackson
  • Elton John
  • B.B. King
  • k.d. lang
  • Madonna 
  • John Mellencamp
  • Sinead O’Connor
  • Prince
  • Gwen Stefani
  • Rod Stewart
  • James Taylor
  • Justin Timberlake
  • Tina Turner 
  • and others

Ritts began his photographic career in the late 70s and gained a reputation as a master of art and commercial photography. In addition to producing portraits and editorial fashion for Vogue, Vanity Fair, Interview and Rolling Stone, Ritts also created successful advertising campaigns for Calvin Klein, Chanel, Donna Karan, Gap, Gianfranco Ferré, Gianni Versace, Giorgio Armani, Levi’s, Pirelli, Polo Ralph Lauren and Valentino among others. Starting in 1988, he directed numerous influential and award winning music videos and commercials. His fine art photography has been the subject of exhibitions worldwide with works residing in many significant public and private collections.

About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum:

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s mission is to engage, teach and inspire through the power of rock and roll. The institution carries out its mission by giving voice to the stories of the people, artifacts and events that shaped rock and roll — through Museum exhibits, materials in the Museum’s Library and Archives, traveling exhibitions and a wide array of innovative educational programs and activities. The 150,000 square-foot Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Cleveland’s rapidly developing North Coast Harbor, is home to major artifact collections, four state-of-the-art theaters and year-round educational and concert programming.

The Museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays (and Saturdays through Labor Day), the Museum is open until 9 p.m. Museum admission is $22 for adults, $18 for adult residents of Greater Cleveland, $17 for seniors (65+), $13 for youth (9-12) and children under 8 are free. A 6% Admission Tax that supports Cleveland Metropolitan Schools is added to each ticket at purchase. Museum Members are always admitted free. For information on how to join the membership program, please call 216.515.8425. For general inquiries, please call 216.781.ROCK (7625) or visit http://www.rockhall.com.  The Ohio Arts Council supports the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Museum is also generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.

1100 Rock and Roll Boulevard
Cleveland, Ohio 44114
(East Ninth Street at Lake Erie)
216.781.ROCK (7625)
website: rockhall.com



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