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Leibovitz Music Photographs Rock the Brooks this Summer
©Annie Leibovitz. Emmylou Harris, Franklin, Tennessee, 2001. Photographic Print.

MEMPHIS, TN.- Annie Leibovitz’s photographs have become defining icons of Western culture. A collection of work by the renowned rock photographer is on view at Memphis Brooks Museum of Art. Annie Leibovitz: American Music is the first exhibition to focus solely on a subject Annie Leibovitz holds close to her heart – music.

For more than 30 years, Leibovitz has photographed performers, fans, and the places where they work and live. A well-regarded portrait photographer, Leibovitz's style is marked by a close collaboration between the photographer and the subject. Her most famous images have graced the covers of magazines such as Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair, as well as album covers for various music legends, including Bruce Springsteen. From juke joints to Graceland, Leibovitz traveled through the landscape of blues, gospel, jazz, and country to shoot photographs of a wide cross section of musicians. Her subjects include the American icons B.B. King, the late Johnny and June Carter Cash, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Pete Seeger, Etta James, and Emmylou Harris, as well as Mary J. Blige, Lucinda Williams, Norah Jones, and a Stax Records reunion.

Brooks’ chief curator Marina Pacini states, “Leibovitz is justifiably recognized for her photographs, in which the sitters are so aptly captured. Emmylou Harris, photographed in black in white, seems to be standing at the end of a road in an almost mystical rural landscape. In contrast, Brian Wilson appears beside a pool in a lush, almost luridly colored, yard with a storm behind him. The settings and tone couldn’t be more different, but they speak volumes about the two musicians. These are just two examples of the engaging and thought-provoking images included in the exhibition.”

The Brooks will host several events in conjunction with the exhibition including a lecture by celebrated music historian Reebee Garofalo, a concert on the museum’s terrace, and a “Rockumentary” film festival in July.

The exhibition of 70 photographs also features a cell phone audio tour narrated by Leibovitz, which includes musical clips. Annie Leibovitz: American Music was organized by Experience Music Project. Presenting sponsor is AutoZone with additional support provided by AmSouth Bank, Lexus of Memphis, and the The Macy's Fund of the Federated Department Stores Foundation.

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