AUGUST 09 to AUGUST 23 2014-
The 70s was a dismal period in England: high unemployment, unions out of control, the economy on a massive decline, England had lost its way.
Punk came. We wanted to change everything, we wanted a piece of the pie, we wanted our own heroes. The Sex Pistols filled this role, four faces of the New British Youth, brash and ready. Ready to take no prisoners, ready to kick down the door of Establishment, ready to fulfill the dream.
From the first time I met them, Johnny Rotten, Sid Vicious, Steve Jones and Paul Cook, I knew they meant it! 77 was the year, one long, short, chaotic, mad, amazing roller coaster year.
The hysteria, the hatred, the backlash from the media and the Establishment came because the band, these four individuals, had the nerve to challenge the very things British society has built as standard.
They mocked the Royal Family (“God Save the Queen”), they mocked the Establishment order of fun (“Holidays in the Sun”). The youths identified, the youths wanted to destroy, to destroy and rebuild.
The Sex Pistols sparked the largest musical rock revolution in history and started the punk movement.
Their extreme music sense, fashion style and their punk spirit still today influence society and artists from a broad range of fields including music, fashion, film, art …
Dennis Morris is a British-based artist who has used the camera to produce an in-depth body of work on extraordinary individuals.
His work is closely associated with music, having created some of the most iconic and memorable images of Bob Marley and the Sex Pistols as well as the Marianne Faithull Broken English album cover, but he has also captured the essence of the Sikh community of Southall (UK), the collection was subsequently bought by English Heritage. He also created the iconic Public Image Ltd logo and their first two album sleeves, including the Metal Box.
Several books of his work have been published, including Bob Marley: A Rebel Life, Destroy on the Sex Pistols and Growing Up Black, a chronicle of Black Britain in the 60s and 70s.
His work is well recognized and has been exhibited internationally (Today Art Museum, Beijing; Laforet Museum, Tokyo; Arles Photography Festival, France; The Photographers’ Gallery, London; Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Cleveland; Superman Is Dead (S.I.D) a collaborative show with Shepard Fairey, LA; Bob Marley: Giant, Known Gallery, LA).
His photographs are included in prestigious public and private collections, such as the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and have appeared in numerous publications, including Rolling Stone, Time, GQ, Vogue, W, Frieze; Lipstick Traces: a Secret History of the Twentieth Century by Greil Marcus, Century by Bruce Bernard, and 100 Days of Active Resistance by Vivienne Westwood.