A new exhibition at London’s Playboy club of the photographer and social documenter Richard Young will be unveiled on 6th April. ‘Icons’ is part of RY40, a celebration of the legendary photographer Richard Young’s 40th year in show business. Esteemed as one of the UK’s most significant social documentary photographers, Richard Young was described by Lord Snowdon as 11 one of the most important photographers of the 20th century. With an archive of over 2 million images, Richard Young’s prolific body of work could easily serve as documentation of popular culture over the past 40 years.
In recognition of his resolute standing at the top of his industry, Richard Young will be celebrating this prodigious 40-year milestone in 40 special ways. Various events (including a variety of exhibitions, lectures, screenings, cross-disciplinary collaborations, pop-up events and charity functions) will be staged throughout the year covering all four decades of Young’s illustrious career. The celebration will then culminate with a major party.
Richard comments: “It is hard to believe that Ihave been in this crazy business for almost forty years. Ihave photo- graphed so many incredible people, from Eliza- beth Taylor to Nelson Mandela, The Dalai Llama to Madonna. I have attended the most star-studded glittering events all over the world, and Istill love what Ido as much as I did all those years ago when I got my first exclusive shot of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.”
Richard Young’s exceptional eye and unique approach has cemented him as the most trusted and prolific contemporary photographer to the stars. Now, even with 40 years under his belt, Richard Young shows no sign of stopping anytime soon.
Richard Young is at the forefront of celebrity photography. With a career spanning 40 years in 2014, and no sign of stopping anytime soon, Richard’s exceptional eye and unique approach has cemented him as the most trusted and prolific contemporary photographer to the stars. As both a portraitist and photojournalist, his unerring ability to capture the moment and present a candid, inside view into the world of celebrity has resulted in iconic images that are celebrated in publications throughout the world.
In recognition of Richard’s tremendous impact in the field of photography, over the past several years he has been honoured with multiple awards and achievements. In October 2013, Richard Young’s candid photograph of Freddie Mercury at home was inducted into the National Portrait Gallery. In July 2013, Richard received an Honorary Fellowship and the title Honorary Doctor in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the Field of Photogra- phy from The University of The Arts London. In March 2013, Richard was awarded Le Prix Cham- pagne de Ia Joie de Vivre, in celebration of his long-standing contribution to Joie de Vivre. The previous year Richard was presented with the Ischia Art Award at the Ischia Global Film and Music Festival in Italy. Most notably, in May and June of 2012, Richard was featured as the sole subject of a four-part Sky Arts documentary “Celebrity Exposed: The Photography of Richard Young”. Directed by Don Letts, this intimate portrayal featured contributions from notable celebrities including Sir Elton John, Kate Moss and Tracey Emin.
Richard has photographed a diverse and distin- guished range of famous celebrities, capturing some genuinely unique moments over the course of his career. He took the last photograph of Keith Moon at a party with Paul and Linda McCartney, just hours before he died. Richard visited orphan- ages in Romania with Michael Jackson, photo- graphed Sting’s wedding to Trudie Styler and toured the country with the Sex Pistols. He has covered parties for the Cannes film festival and the Oscars in Los Angeles. He accompanied and documented United States troops in Iraq and Fidel Castro in Cuba. These examples are only a few of Richard’s diverse achievements, and are a mark of the trust and liking that he inspires in his subjects.
Richard’s interest in photography began purely by accident in 1974, when he was given a Nikon camera and asked to take pictures to illustrate a book written by Welsh author John Cowper-Pow- ys. A few months later, it was through a friend that Richard met Paul Getty Jr., who had recently been released by Italian kidnappers, was missing an ear, and being sought by virtually every newspaper in the world. Paul invited Richard to take pictures of him and his girlfriend around town. The Evening Standard bought the photographs, and so began Richard’s long and successful career as a social photographer.
Richard has published three books, By Invitation Only, Paparazzo!, and Shooting Stars. Richard’s newest book, RY40 is scheduled to be published in 2014. His photographs have been exhibited world- wide and he has had several retrospectives. His most recent of which travelled from Beverley Hills to Ischia to London celebrating the life of Eliza- beth Taylor with 18 of his most iconic images.
Photo: Richard Young: Photo Detail – Jack Nicholson Clairdges Hotel 1978
Richard Young “Icons” at Playboy Club London on Wednesday 2nd April Members or by Invitation Only