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Patti Smith: Camera Solo

Patti Smith, Self-Portrait, NYC, 2003
Patti Smith, Self-Portrait, NYC, 2003
© Patti Smith. Courtesy the artist and Robert Miller Gallery

Pioneering punk rock musician, singer, songwriter, and poet Patti Smith began as a visual artist and has been drawing and taking photographs since the late 1960s. At that time she was in a relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe.  Smith began taking 35 mm photographs in 1968 as components for collages and took up the serious use of the Polaroid Land Camera in 1995. Last year, Patti Smith: Camera Solo, the first museum exhibition of her photography in the United States was presented at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford, CT. Patti Smith: Camera Solo will be presented again June 1, 2012 through September 2, 2012 at Detroit Institute of Arts. The exhibition comprises more than 60 black-and-white gelatin silver prints taken with her vintage Polaroid camera. According to the organizers, “Patti Smith: Camera Solo explores themes that are significant to Smith: poets and writers; portraiture,  including symbolic portraits; travel; and art and architecture.”

Patti Smith, Cherub, Fountain, San Severino, 2005
Patti Smith, Cherub, Fountain, San Severino, 2005
© Patti Smith. Courtesy the artist and Robert Miller Gallery

In 2010 Patti Smith published Just Kids, a memoir of her relationship with Mapplethorpe.

Visit the Pop Life Art homepage for links more musicians that are artists.

Related blog post: Patti Smith: Camera Solo at Art Gallery of Ontario (January 6, 2013)