BIOGRAPHY

PRINTING

The Who

These rare images show The Who in their early days - shopping, shaving, sleeping, hanging out - and form a unique and intimate document of the iconic British rock band at the very beginning of their careers. Pete Townshend reflected on this time with Jones and his photographs in the Sunday Times Magazine article "Mods Almighty" on April 29th 2007: "Colin Jones is good company and gave me good advice," he recalls. "During a separation with my girlfriend he urged me to grovel a little to get her back. I did so and later married her." "On February 11th 1967 I remember travelling to a Who show in Cromer, Norfolk in Colin's little Lotus Elan. It was cramped and slow-going. I remember thinking if I'd been driving we would have made the journey in half the time." "In my days with Colin I would usually carry in the back of the car whichever of my guitars was still in one piece. I would often have to repair guitars after my shows and rarely had more than one electric guitar at one time." "It is very satisfying looking at Colin's wonderfully mischievous photographs today. There is a continuity between what I am doing today and what I was doing in those pictures. Seeing them makes me feel more like the artisan, potter or painter I have always longed to be rather than a mere pop performer." "When I see these pictures of The Who in 1966 I think I am coming home again, back on course, approaching that old ideal. I can still see a constancy of purpose even if it is rather vain... I still spend an insane amount of money shopping for clothes and a good part of my time on stage is spent adopting poses rather than actually playing music."

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CONTACT

For enquiries or photography print prices please contact the archive  using the following information.

gallery@lucy-bell.com
+44 (0)1424 434 828

For Licensing requests please email
requests@topfotos.co.uk

Vintage prints are available from Michael Hoppen Gallery gallery@michaelhoppengallery.com 020 7352 3649

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Biography

Colin Jones was born in the East End of London, in 1936. During the Blitz, the young and dyslexic Colin Jones had attended 13 different school before being recruited by the Festival Ballet, later joining the Royal Ballet, at a time when Kenneth MacMillan was embarking on some of his most controversial work. Described as " the prototype for Billy Elliot" Jones’ life journey reads like a Hollywood movie which saw  him tour with the Royal Ballet performing alongside Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn, and in Kenneth MacMillans’ “The Invitation” with Prima Ballerina Lynn Seymour, who he later married before leaving to become a documentary photographer.

Jones bought his first camera  on tour in Japan in 1953, whilst running an errand for Dame Margot Fonteyn and started taking photographs. These photographs capture the reality of life as a ballet dancer – the hard work and dedication required to succeed, and revealed the ballet as it had never been seen before. Travelling from Newcastle to Sunderland in 1961 Jones spotted some coal searchers scouring the slag heaps and skipped his ballet class heading out to photograph them. The following year Jones left the ballet  and went to see The Observer Magazine, who employed him to go and photograph the Alabama Race Riots of 1963, and subsequently many other photo-documentary stories, often risky, including the Brazilian gold mines, the gangs in Jamaica, prostitution in the Philippines, the boy soldiers of the Khmer Rouge, and the Cargo Cults of the New Hebrides who worshipped Prince Phillip. He was fortunate to be working at the heyday of investigative photo-journalism, alongside photographers such as Don McCullin and Philip Jones Griffiths and under the editorship of Harold Evans at the Sunday Times

Jones, has documented facets of British social history over the years as diverse as the vanishing industrial working lives of the Northeast(Grafters), marginalised Afro-Caribbean youth in London (The Black House) and the high-octane hedonism of Swinging London in the 1960's with his iconic images of The Who early in their career (Maximum Who).His work has been published in every major publication  including Life, National Geographic and in many supplements for the major broadsheets. Jones work has been exhibited widely including  The Photographers' Gallery in London, The National Portrait Gallery, London, Tate Modern, and the Hayward."

He has been described as the George Orwell of Photography and his work as a social documentary photographer has been much acclaimed.  Katharine Viner writing in The Sunday Times about his work from the "Grafters Series " writes "They look like something described by Orwell in one of his political essays, like photographs from the 1930s to illustrate "The Road to Wigan Pier" cloth caps and granite faced dockers" Katharine Viner -Sunday Times Magazine 13th October 1996

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Press features

Past Exhibitions

Colin Jones - The George Orwell of Photgraphy - Project Art Space Bermondsey

Works from his Grafters Series

9th - 14th July 2019 Project Art Sace Bermondsey

Colin jones - The George Orwell of Photography - Lucy Bell Fine Art

Works from his Grafters Series

4th April - 15th june 2019

Beatles to Bowie - National Portrait Gallery

60s Exposed

December 2009 - January 2010

Colin Jones

Odyssey II

December 2003

Here We Are: Burberry

Celebrating British Photography

18 September - 1st October 2017

Colin Jones - 50 Years of The Who

Photoaumnales - Beauvais France

20 September - 16 November 2014

History Is Now: Hayward

7 Artists Take On Britain

2015

Made You Look: Dandyism & Black Masculinity

Photographers Gallery

July - September 2016

Tate Modern London

The Black House, London 571 Holloway Road 1973

2016

Beetles+Huxley

An Ideal For Living (Joint exhibition)

27th July – 17th Sept 2016

The Photographers Gallery

Made You Look (Joint Exhibition)

15th July – 25th Sept 2016

Michael Hoppen Gallery

Retrospective

5th May – 1st June 2016

Lucy Bell Gallery

On Ballet

8th July – 8th Aug 2015

Proud Chelsea

A Life With The Royal Ballet

29th Jan – 1st Mar 2015

Proud Camden

50 Years of The Who

6th Feb – 23rd Mar 2014

James Hyman Gallery

Country Matters (Joint Exhibition)

Sept – Nov 2013

Michael Hoppen Gallery

Jerusalem

7th Oct – 12th Nov 2011

Topfoto gallery

The Glory of English Ballet

18th July – 26th Aug 2011

Proud Central

The Who: In the Beginning

24th Sept – 15th Nov 2009

Hoopers Gallery

Classic Dance

October 2008

Michael Hoppen Gallery

The Black House

1st June – 1st July 2007

Britart Gallery

Stars of the East (Joint Exhibition)

1st – 31st Dec 2002

The Photographers Gallery

The Black House

4 May – 4 June 1977

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Printing

Professor Colin Jones uses traditional darkroom techniques and prints all his own black-and-white images from his darkroom at home.

Silver Gelatin 

The traditional process for producing black and white prints is a wet chemical process whereby exposing a piece of paper coated with silver nitrate held together in a gelatin layer to light via a black and white negative film producing a print. 

The paper is negative and the film is also negative with two negatives producing a positive image on the paper.Prints produced this way are termed silver gelatin and are most sort after by serious collectors. 

No two prints are exactly alike as this is an organic process and each print will be affected by the depletion of the developer, chemical temperature and processing time furthermore if the printer adds or removes light by what is called ‘dodging or burning in’ then this too will produce slightly different effects on each print.

Silver Gelatin
The traditional process for producing black and white prints is a wet chemical process whereby exposing a piece of paper coated with silver nitrate held together in a gelatin layer to light via a black and white negative film producing a print.

The paper is negative and the film is also negative with two negatives producing a positive image on the paper.


Prints produced this way are termed silver gelatin and are most sort after by serious collectors.

No two prints are exactly alike as this is an organic process and each print will be affected by the depletion of the developer, chemical temperature and processing time furthermore if the printer adds or removes light by what is called ‘dodging or burning in’ then this too will produce slightly different effects on each print.