BLINDS & SHUTTERS
BLINDS & SHUTTERS
'When Michael Cooper the photographer was working in the Sixties it was a much more exhilarating and productive period... There was exploration and excitement in all the arts and a feeling that something could happen.' - FRANCIS BACON
The Sixties was a prolific and exhilarating period of artistic cross-fertilization. For the first time in Britain the class barriers were really down; everyone seemed to know everyone. Through his association with London's influential art dealer Robert Fraser, the Rolling Stones and The Beatles, Michael Cooper met the artists, writers, poets and musicians of the time as well as the courtiers surrounding them. Many of those who brilliantly lit up the decade on both sides of the Atlantic were photographed by him. He lived the life of his subjects and they trusted him, revealing themselves to him in all their power and their humanity.
The informality and intimacy of these portraits make these pictures incredibly candid, often funny and sometimes sad. Each seems to be the perfect evocation of an era that changed the world forever. Most of Michael's photos are a reportage of what he and his famous friends happened to be doing that day, but there are also the famous commissioned photographs: the Sgt. Pepper's album cover was set up in his studio and he travelled to New York with the Stones to mastermind the Satanic Majesties' Request album cover. Remarkable out-takes from these two sessions are published in BLINDS & SHUTTERS.
'It's difficult to separate The Beatles from the fashion or the culture. It was all happening at once, as a kind of whirlpool.' - PAUL McCARTNEY
The result of five years' international research and close collaboration with 93 contributors, BLINDS & SHUTTERS is a mind-expanding journey through the Sixties, internationally acclaimed as the definitive cult chronicle of that decade. With scores of anecdotes and first hand narratives to accompany the photographs, the text from the book's 93 contributors amounts to 30,000 words. BLINDS & SHUTTERS is therefore a unique collective account of an era by the people that defined it.
'Michael had that perfect ability to take all those pictures without annoying anybody. It would be accepted by whoever was around - people wouldn't know they were having their picture taken.' - KEITH RICHARDS
Michael Cooper's superb photographs provide a unique insider's view of the Sixties. He was a close friend of The Rolling Stones and The Beatles - and thus of everyone who was drawn to them. He was never without his camera and while he was simply recording whatever was going on around him every day, he was also aware that he was documenting a historic time with epoch-making people.
Keith Richards, in his foreword to this book, recalls of Michael: 'I remember a camera protruding from his chest as if he was some mutant, and he wore pink woolly socks'.
Michael Cooper died tragically in 1973. During the last stages of his life he conceived the idea for BLINDS & SHUTTERS and expressed a wish that it should be published with a little help from his friends. In an astonishing response, 93 contributors (including three Beatles, and all the Stones) banded together to provide the book's text.
'The subjects of my book are not just faces I have photographed but people I have worked with, or become involved with on a very personal level. This is why I prefer to think of this book not just as my own, but a collective work.' - Michael Cooper (1972)
50,000 autographs were given during the making of BLINDS & SHUTTERS in 1989. Each anniversary copy is signed personally by at least nine of the contributors:
Tariq Ali, Kenneth Anger, Neil Aspinall, Brian Auger, Don Bachardy, Francis Bacon, Long John Baldry, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston, Jo Bergman, Andrew Birkin, Sir Peter Blake, Derek Boshier, Jenny Boyd, Pattie Boyd, William Burroughs, Donald Cammell, Anthony Caro, Patrick Caulfield, Eric Clapton, Leonard Cohen, Adam Cooper, David Courts, Spencer Davis, Jim Dine, Terry Doran, Julie Driscoll, John Dunbar, Duane Eddy, Marianne Faithfull, Robert Fraser, Jean Genet, Christopher Gibbs, Ralph Gibson, Allen Ginsberg, Richard Hamilton, George Harrison, Richie Havens, Jann Haworth, David Hockney, Dennis Hopper, John Irvin, Mick Jagger, Sarah Janson, Allen Jones, John Kasmin, Craig Kauffman, Phil Kaufman, Tony Kent, Astrid Kirchherr, Stash Klossowski, Al Kooper, Gavin Lambert, Sandy Lieberson, Paul McCartney, Michael McClure, John McConnell, Earl McGrath, Ian McLagan, Taj Mahal, Gerard Malanga, Ann Marshall, John Mayall, Richard Merkin, Nicholas Monro, Kim Moon, Ed Moses, Graham Nash, Harry Nilsson, Claes Oldenburg, Anita Pallenberg, Eduardo Paolozzi, Gretchen Parsons, Keith Richards, Perry Richardson, Bridget Riley, Larry Rivers, George Segal, Colin Self, Carly Simon, Terry Southern, Dusty Springfield, Ringo Starr, Ian Stewart, Dean Stockwell, Derek Taylor, Jurgen Vollmer, Klaus Voormann, Andy Warhol, Charlie Watts, Nigel Waymouth, Steve Winwood, Ronnie Wood, and the book's Executive Consultant, Bill Wyman.
THE LIMITED EDITION
To celebrate 45 years of Genesis Publications and 30 years since the milestone publication of our most sought-after limited edition, we are delighted to make available the final 600 copies of BLINDS & SHUTTERS.
The edition is limited to 5,000 signed and numbered copies worldwide. Each book is personally signed by at least nine of the contributors.
Presented in a special anniversary binding, the 368-page book is quarter bound in leather with foil blocking and silkscreened page edging. An individually placed photograph is inset into the book's front cover. A hand-made slipcase houses each book. The publication's large format (360mm x 250mm) provides the perfect medium for Michael Cooper's work, which is printed on a fine quality, heavy (170 gsm) paper.
Over 600 photographs are included. The fascinating text that runs throughout the book is written by 93 contributors. Their recollections provide revealing, first-hand accounts of the events of the Sixties.