Friday, July 8, 2011

The Young Jagger


London's National Portrait Gallery has a fascinating display of portraits of a very young Mick J on show until November. It includes previously unseen shots taken by Gered Mankowitz, who was just 18 when appointed the Stones 'official' photographer.

And what age-defining images Mankowitz created in that London epicentre of '60s counter-culture, Mason Yard. In his studio, right next door to the Scotch of St James club and the Indica Art Gallery, not only was the Stones image moulded, but also that of the new-to-London Hendrix.

Inevitably, there's not a plaque to be seen recording the history made in any of these buildings.

Arguably, two of his best Stones shots are those that graced the covers of 'Between the Buttons' and 'Out of Our Heads'. The latter looks like Mason's Yard might have been the location. It captures that 'bad boy' menace so important to the band's early market poitioning! What a truly great rock photo.

If you're felling flush then you can aquire limited edition copies of Mankowitz's photo's from Jill Furmanovsky's RockArchive.com. There's a great book, too; 'Hendrix at Mason's Yard', currently on Amazon for £18. If you're really loaded (or think it's a good investment) you can get an authographed copy for £330 from Snap Galleries, where they are exhibiting Mankowitz's work until November.

The cheapest way to view Mankowitz's art though is at The National Gallery; that's free!

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