During the Rock Legends exhibition we had many wonderful conversions with people reminiscing about the heady days of the 60’s musical revolution, and we’re pleased to say that those conversations will continue as the collection will remain at the Old School over the course of the year, with 3-4 images on permanent display and the others available on request.
Taken when the bands and artists toured Yorkshire in the early 1960’s Paul’s photographs are rare collectables, with only 49 prints taken from the negative for Beatles photographs and only 100 taken for the other artists. Thus they present a unique opportunity to own a piece of musical history.
On Saturday 9th June, as part of the Rock Legends exhibition, BAFTA award winner Paul Berriff will be coming to Muker to talk about his life and career as a photographer and filmmaker, a career spanning 50 years from the 1960s to the present day.
Paul’s talk will take you on a memorable journey from his early influences as a 1950’s paper boy delivering Picture Post and Life Magazine – two magazines that told the news and current affairs through powerful full page black and white photographs – via his time as a young press photographer for the Yorkshire Evening Post chasing police cars and fire engines around the streets of Leeds, and onto his days as a BBC and independent film maker.
During this time Paul met and photographed many young bands and artists who would become household names including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix and Sandie Shaw. He covered The Troubles in Northern Ireland, worked on the James Bond Live and Let Die film set and filmed with Prince Charles for a year. He is the only director/ producer to have been given permission to follow the lives of NASA shuttle astronauts and their families as they prepared for launch.
Being a film maker can be a hazardous affair and Paul has experienced his fair share of danger, surviving four near-death experiences …
… leaping from a sinking ship in the North Sea; being blown from the top of an exploding volcano in Nicaragua; walking away from a major helicopter crash in the Scottish Cairngorms;
… and miraculously surviving (along with his film camera) the collapse of the Twin Towers on 9/11, the only British survivor of that day.
Paul’s talk will be accompanied by photographs and film footage of the events he’s captured, including that day on 9/11.
The tide is receding at the The Yorkshire Coast & Sea Exhibition as it enters its final two weeks, and we’ve put up new work to take us through to the end of the exhibition including: Whitby Snowstorm by Paul Berriff (above), Filey Beach by John Harrison, Staithes Harbour by John Wood, and Scarborough Spa and Whitby Pier by Richard and Janet Burdon.
Paul Berriff’s photographs of the Yorkshire Coast (featured image above Force 10) remind us of the power and unforgiving, biting, nature of the North Sea when its mood take a turn for the worse, and of the courage of those who choose to make their living from it.
Shot on film, in black & white, the natural grain adds to the atmosphere and drama of the images, capturing the scene in a way only film can, and though most photographers have long since switched to the convenience of digital, Paul continues to use the medium of film to great effect.
Paul’s powerful images provide a very different perspective and counterpoint to much of the other work in the exhibition; without its gritty realism the collection would have felt incomplete.