Albert Watson : A provocative testimony
Albert Watson
A provocative testimony
Margot N., November 5, 2007
Albert Watson_Mick Jagger_Rolling Stone
Albert Watson_Mick Jagger_Rolling Stone


Albert Watson has made his mark as one of the world's most successlul fashion and commercial photographers during the last four decades, while creating his own art along the way. Over the years, his striking images have appeared on more than 250 covers of Vogue around the world and have been featured in countless other publications, from Rolling Stone to Time to Vibe many of the photographs iconic portraits of rock stars, rappers, actors and other celebrities. Albert was the official Royal Photographer for Prince Andrew's wedding to Sarah Ferguson.  Albert also has created the photography for hundreds of successful advertising campaigns for major corporations, such as the Gap, Levïs, Revlon and Chanel, and he has directed more than 600 TV commercials. All the while, Albert has spent much of his time working on personal projects, creating stunning images from his travels, from Marrakech to Las Vegas to the Orkneys. Much of this work, along with his well-known portraits and fashion photographs, has been featured in museum and gallery shows around the world.

Albert Watson
Albert Watson


Albert Watson_David Bowie, NYC, 1996
Albert Watson_David Bowie, NYC, 1996


The photo industry bible, Photo District News, named Albert one of the 20 most influential photographers of all time. Born and raised in Edinburgh, Scotland, Albert studied graphic design at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee, and film and television at the Royal College of Art in London. Though blind in one eye since birth, Albert studied photography as part of his curriculum.

Albert Watson_Keith Richards, Rolling Stone_NYC
Albert Watson_Keith Richards, Rolling Stone_NYC


Albert Watson_Marilyn Manson_NYC
Albert Watson_Marilyn Manson_NYC


Albert Watson_Alfred Hitchcock, 1973
Albert Watson_Alfred Hitchcock, 1973


ln 1970, he moved to the United States with his wife, Elizabeth, who got a job as an elementary school teacher in Los AngeLes, where Albert began shooting photos, mostly as a hobby. Later that year, Albert was introduced to an art director at Max Factor, who offered him his first session, from which the company bought two shots. Albert's distinctive style eventually caught the attention of American and European fashion magazines such as Mademoiselle, GQ and Harper's Bazaar, and he began commuting between Los Angeles and New York.

Albert Watson_Mia, The Palomino Club, Las Vegas
Albert Watson_Mia, The Palomino Club, Las Vegas


 In 1976, Albert landed his first job for Vogue, and his move to New York in the same year shilted his career into high gear. Despite the enormous stress from all of his commissioned assignments, Albert devotes much of his time to extensive personal projects, and he has published two books, "Cyclops" (1994) and "Maroc" (1998), and he is working on a third, "Shot in Vegas,"' due out in 2007.

Albert Watson_Jellyfish Tank Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, 2001
Albert Watson_Jellyfish Tank Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, 2001


Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997
Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997


ln addition, many catalogs of Alberts photographs have been published in conjunction with museum and gallery shows around the world.  Albert has always been a workaholic. The archives at his studio in Manhattan's West Village are filled with millions of images and negatives, on which world-famous magazines and companies can be read. His huge studio, also used as a personal gallery, is filled with extraordinarily large¬format photographs taken in Las Vegas.

Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997
Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997


Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997
Albert Watson_H. Stern, Lost project diary, 1997


Albert Watson_Fun City Boulevard, Las Vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Fun City Boulevard, Las Vegas, 2000


At first glance these landscapes, interiors and portraits take the viewer by surprise with their soft, filtered range of colors. But even in his new creations, Albert stays true to himself. The photographs create an aura that takes the viewer into the image but simuLtaneously demands a reverent distance.

Albert Watson_Tod Hotel_Las vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Tod Hotel_Las vegas, 2000


Albert Watson_Motel Phoenix, Las Vegas, 1990
Albert Watson_Motel Phoenix, Las Vegas, 1990


Albert Watson_Naomi Campbell, Palm Springs, 1989
Albert Watson_Naomi Campbell, Palm Springs, 1989


Albert"s visual language follows his own distinctive rules and concepts of quality. With their brilliance, urgency, even grandeur, his photographs stand out 50 clearly against the world of today's images. His way of lighting subjects, especially the fetish objects and portraits, creates a nearly meditative atmosphere in the photographs.

Albert Watson_Mike Tyson, NYC, 1998
Albert Watson_Mike Tyson, NYC, 1998


Albert Watson_Kate Moss, Marrakech, 1997
Albert Watson_Kate Moss, Marrakech, 1997


Albert Watson_Monkey with masks, 1994
Albert Watson_Monkey with masks, 1994


Without a doubt, Albert Watson is an artist who greatly en riches our perception with his unique photographie view. Though the wide variety of his images reflects an effortless versatility, they are nevertheless identifiable as Albert Watson photographs by their sheer power and technical virtuosity whether it's a portrait of a Las Vegas dominatrix or a close-up of King Tutankhamen's glove. This single-minded commitment to perfection has made Albert one of the world's most sought-after photographer.

Albert Watson_Dogs in the car, Las vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Dogs in the car, Las vegas, 2000


Albert Watson_Hell, Budget Suites, Las Vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Hell, Budget Suites, Las Vegas, 2000


Albert Watson_Palm trees, Las Vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Palm trees, Las Vegas, 2000


Albert Watson_Palm trees, Las Vegas, 2000
Albert Watson_Palm trees, Las Vegas, 2000


Albert Watson_Torso with Aztec Fan, NYC, 1990
Albert Watson_Torso with Aztec Fan, NYC, 1990