My career began with Condé Nast Paris and Vogue Hommes, Vogue Decoration, and Vogue Paris.  Regular assignments included very well-known individuals and places. Les Grands Crus du Bordelais, private chateaux in the Southwest of France, the Orient Express, portraits of British aristocrats including the inimitable Duchess of Devonshire, Lord and Lady Cato and Viscount Linley, now Earl of Snowdon; as well as Parisian haute couture, including Victoire de Castellane, formerly of Chanel and now Creative Director of Christian Dior Fine Jewellery; Bernard Lanvin; and Jean-Louis Dumas-Hermès. A nice beginning, but not enough for a young man eager to photograph the world on his own terms.  

 

For my first independent project I chose the top five colleges in Cambridge University, which included portraits of not only professors, scientists, researchers, and college deans, but gardeners, porters, maids, butlers, and eventually students – each in their own environment.  This series of silver gelatin prints was exhibited at Christie’s London, King Street, Paris Galerie Demi-Teinte, and then published by Vogue Paris.  Several of these portraits are also in the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery in London.

After finishing that very serious work on academia, my desire was to do something entirely different and even more challenging. The theatre! And who could be a more challenging subject than the world-renowned, genius cinema and theatre director, Ingmar Bergman?  Up to that time, Bergman had agreed to pose for only one photographer in the world, and that was Irving Penn.  He brusquely turned down scores of other photographers and magazines, so this was a challenge. And so began my “Swedish saga”…I would photograph the entire artistic team of the reclusive Ingmar Bergman, in Stockholm.  And, for three years I devoted myself to producing 98 portraits, and ultimately one of Bergman himself!  So there are now two photographers in the world who actually photographed Bergman, me and Irving Penn! This series was exhibited at the Berlin Kinematheque and at Art Photo Collection in Gothenburg. The Bank of Sweden subsequently chose my portrait of Ingmar Bergman to appear on their new 200sk banknote. A great honor…but one I worked for, believe me.

Next was a work on semi-tropical plants in Sintra, Portugal.  Actually, in the garden memorialized by Lord Byron in his poetry. This series was selected as the winner of the Hasselblad World Master Award and was also exhibited at the Galerie Armelle Toublanc on Avenue Matignon in Paris. The Erna and Victor Hasselblad Foundation also purchased several limited-edition platinum palladium prints of this series.

 

Based in New York and Paris, I travel constantly and am very fortunate to have the luxury of selecting my subjects based on my own interests.  Currently, I am working on “Lumière Atlantique”, which began in the Caribbean during a voyage on the Queen Mary 2; a book is in progress, as well as several other photographic series that challenge my creativity and skills every day.

For information on available prints or portrait commissions, please contact:  marie@dukeandnelson.com

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