Rest in Peace Champ.

 

June 06, 2016 by Chris Forney

Brennan's Iconic "1977" photograph sells for $16,800.00 at auction

An example of Michael Brennan's famous portrait of Ali entitled "1977" went on the auction block in March of this year and sold for a record price of $16,800.00.  This monumental print measures 48 x 63 inches and was signed by Muhammad Ali himself.  It's further evidence of the importance of this image and the outstanding quality of this rare edition of photographic prints.  

June 03, 2016 by Chris Forney

Michael Brennan's Led Zeppelin photographs to be exhibited in London this month!

Proud Chelsea Exhibition

Led Zeppelin From the Beginning 1963-1975

21st August - 4th October 2015

Proud Chelsea is thrilled to present Led Zeppelin from the Beginning, an exhibition which traces a truly experimental and innovative moment in rock ‘n’ roll history; from the initial formation of The Yardbirds, through their various reincarnations and music experimentations, to the musical venture led by Jimmy Page which rose out of their ashes. Initially predicted ‘to go down like a lead balloon’, Led Zeppelin, the most enduring and prolific rock band of all time, was born.

Often considered the training ground of three of rocks greatest guitarists; Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck, The Yardbirds were pioneering in their fusion of R&B, blues, pop, rock and experimental psychedelic music. Chris Dreja, a former Yardbird, turned down the position of bassist in Led Zeppelin to pursue his passion for photography and went on to capture his former band-mates as they gained international critical and commercial success. Dreja’s portraits of Jimmy Page and Peter Grant during the final leg of the Yardbirds’ tour viewed alongside Led Zeppelin’s early promo shoots provide a stunning visual history between the bands and trace burgeoning rock ‘n’ roll movement of the late 60s and early 70s.

The previously unseen evolution of Led Zeppelin, from their first ever performance as the New Yardbirds at Gladsaxe Teen Club photographed by Jørgen Angel, to the raw, carnal stage presence captured by Lynn Goldsmith, to the histrionic, thunderous performances and the bacchanals offstage photographed by Michael Brennan, is laid bare in this truly retrospective exhibition.

Sitting on a speaker on stage in Denver Coliseum in March, 1970, Dan Fong, a photographer and production co-ordinator, witnessed the dynamism of a Led Zeppelin performance the first time. Blown away, Fong photographed the band, capturing something of their raw, animal, yet almost mystical musical experimentations. This sense of spiritualism is evident in Terence Spencer’s atmospheric images of Robert Plant wandering the woods of Wales, a place he described as ‘an undistorted mirror’ where he found inspiration for song writing. Finally, Michael Putland’s images of the foursome on their final tour of the US in Madison Square Garden provide a close up look at rock ‘n’ roll icons at the pinnacle of their success with an immediacy which conveys the visceral nature of the band’s performance.

Showcasing an eclectic and diverse range of works from an era when rock music was changing the rest of the world, Led Zeppelin from the Beginning, is not one to be missed.

 

https://www.proudonline.co.uk/exhibitions

August 18, 2015 by Chris Forney

A Life In Pictures by Robert Isenberg

A life in pictures

11/13/2014 (original URL http://www.ticotimes.net/l/a-life-in-pictures )

Years ago, back in his native England, a young Michael Brennan was working as a grunt for The Croydon Times. He liked the job and working for a newspaper, but he had always fancied himself a proper reporter. One day, he asked a higher-up employee what his prospects might be writing for the paper.

He was 21 years old and had grown up in working-class Sheffield. He had never handled a serious camera in his life. He couldn’t afford the Rolleiflex that he coveted, so he ended up buying a cheaper Yashica. He fiddled with the camera on his own, and colleagues gave him basic instructions, but Brennan didn’t study in a regular classroom. He didn’t take workshops or go on photo-walks. He dove headfirst into the trade, snapping pictures for The Croydon Times, then The Sunday People and The Daily Herald. He worked his way through the ranks, photographing a wide range of subjects.

In 1967, Brennan found himself on the edge of a large body of still water in England’s Lake District. He was supposed to witness the pilot Donald Campbell as he attempted to break the water speed record in the hydroplane Bluebird K7. The day was expected to be historic, but it took a tragic turn. Campbell launched forward, slowed, then turned around, hoping to make a second attempt. The hydroplane lifted off the surface and crashed into the water, killing Campbell and wrecking the vehicle.

Brennan took a quick burst of pictures as the hydroplane crashed. He felt confident that he had captured something, though it was impossible to say what he had culled from the seconds-long cartwheel. When the pictures were developed, Brennan discovered he had taken three perfect shots: the hydroplane in midair, then smashing into the water.

The photos appeared in LIFE magazine. Brennan won the British News Picture of the Year Award.

Today, he is among the most acclaimed living photographers in the world.

November 19, 2014 by Chris Forney

Read what people are saying about Brennan's photographs!

“I can feel the texture of all the sweat and hard work. I can feel my life.” (Ali had this to say the very first time he saw the now famous '1977' photograph)

Muhammad Ali

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“Michael Brennan’s portrait of Muhammad Ali from 1977 is an extraordinary, historically-significant photograph, and we are thrilled to add it to the Permanent Collection of the National Portrait Gallery"

 

Frank H. Goodyear Associate Curator of Photographs
National Portrait Gallery - Smithsonian Institution.

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“Michael Brennan's iconic 1977 portrait photograph of Muhammad Ali captures something far bigger and deeper than just the beautiful face of a beautiful man.  It is a detailed map of the personal journey of one whose incomparable talents and audacity caused literati to swoon, taught a generation to question authority, and ultimately altered the path of a society which had never before seen a man exactly like him.  For tens of millions of us born as baby boomers, the gradual dissolution of the power portrayed in those features has both embodied and reflected the gradual dissolution of our youth.  To look at him the way he was then is to remember, with joy and sorrow, who we all once were.”

 

Jim Lampley
Boxing commentator, HBO Sports

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October 30, 2014 by Chris Forney

Signed Muhammad Ali Photography by Michael Brennan

Ali signing Brennan's Iconic "1977" photograph. 

 

Michael Brennan with Muhammad Ali:
October 13, 2014 by Chris Forney

CBS News Interview on Brennan's Photography

Jaimie Maggio from CBS Sports interviewing Michael at one of his opening events:
October 13, 2014 by Chris Forney

Michael Brennan's Iconic '1977' photo of Muhammad Ali

Legendary boxing commentator Jim Lampley discusses Michael Brennan’s ‘1977’ image of Muhammad Ali

“Michael Brennan’s iconic 1977 portrait photograph of Muhammad Ali captures something far bigger and deeper than just the beautiful face of a beautiful man. It is a detailed map of the personal journey of one whose incomparable talents and audacity caused literati to swoon, taught a generation to question authority, and ultimately altered the path of a society which had never before seen a man exactly like him. For tens of millions of us born as baby boomers, the gradual dissolution of the power portrayed in tho se features has both embodied and reflected the gradual dissolution of our youth. To look at him the way he was then is to remember, with joy and sorrow, who we all once were.”

Jim Lampley
Boxing commentator, HBO Sports

September 25, 2014 by Chris Forney