Gered MANKOWITZ UK, b. 1946

Gered Mankowitz was born in London, England, on 3rd August 1946. After an education of sorts at several London co-educational "progressive" schools, he left at 15, avoiding all exams and completed his education devoid of any formal qualifications. Having displayed a natural 'eye' for photography whilst on a school trip to Holland and having been inspired to take up photography by the actor Peter Sellers, and he was offered an apprenticeship at Camera Press Ltd., in London.  

 

During 1963, Gered met and photographed the singing duo Chad and Jeremy, and Gered found himself working in the music industry at a time when it desperately needed new, mould breaking images.  He began to work with a new generation of producers photographing artists who were of his own age group and who felt at ease with him in a way that had not been possible with other photographers. At the end of 1963 Gered opened his first studio, at 9 Masons Yard in the heart of London's West End.  On one side was the infamous disco "The Scotch of St.James", hangout of the pop glitterati of the time, and on the other the art gallery "Indica", partly financed by The Beatles and where John Lennon met Yoko Ono.

 

Within a few months Gered had already begun to make a name for himself, and he was approached to photograph Marianne Faithful, who had just had a big hit with "As Tears Go By".  Working closely with Marianne he got to know her manager and producer Andrew Loog Oldham.  In early 1965, Oldham asked him to photograph the Rolling Stones, who he also managed and produced.  This was a major turning point in Gered's career, because from this first session came the cover for "Out of Our Heads" (U.S. title "December's Children"), and as a result he was asked by the Stones to go to America with them on their record breaking 1965 autumn tour.  During this 9 week (48 city) tour of the U.S. Gered photographed the Stones on stage and off, and got particularly close to Keith and Charlie.  There were many adventures as Gered found himself on the road with the greatest Rock band in the world at the peak of their original success.  Gered continued working with the Stones as their 'official' photographer, producing photos for albums ("Between the Buttons";  "Got Live If You Want It";  "Big Hits"; and several others), press and publicity, taken at home, in the recording studio, on stage and behind the scenes until 1967, when the band broke off with their manager, Oldham.

 

In 1982 Gered had a major exhibition of his work at London's famous Photographers' Gallery.  This was seen by over 16,000 people, a record for the gallery at the time, and it then toured the U.K. for over 2 years.  This exhibition was the first in the U.K. to focus on the world of music and was a pathfinder in this genre. In 1984 a book based on this exhibition, called "Hit Parade", was published in the U.K. and U.S.A.  Also in 1984 a book of Gered's Rolling Stones photographs, called "Satisfaction", was published. An extensive schedule of international exhibitions followed.

 

Gered is still producing photography for the music industry and has recently completed sessions with The Hives, Snow Patrol, The Duke Spirit, The Bravery, Blondelle, BMD and most recently Patrick Wolf and Maria Harvieu.

 

In 2007 Gered moved to Cornwall and spends most of his time working on his own projects and teaching at University College Falmouth. He has embarked upon a new photographic project of personal reflections manifested by the condition and process of rust - exploring the hidden beauty and textures of objects during their organic transition and corrosion. 

 

© Gered Mankowitz