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SMILE - Lynn Goldsmith in the 80s

Temporary exhibition featuring Lynn Goldsmith.

Rockheim Temporary
June 17th 2023 - September 1st 2024

The 1980s brought a sea change to popular music with the rise of
music videos, artists as fashion icons, and musical boundaries breached by technological advancements. The exhibition SMILE showcases the popular music of the 1980s through the life and lens of American photographer Lynn Goldsmith. Taking on the persona of Will Powers, Goldsmith made her own musical contributions to the decade, collaborating with musicians such as Nile Rodgers, Sting, Todd Rundgren and Steve Winwood. Will Powers’ revolutionary 3D computer-animated music videos have later been shown in several galleries and museum exhibitions.

The ‘80s began with the dream-is-over assassination of John Lennon. The advent and popularity of MTV over the decade connected the success of music to the image of the artist more than ever before. Nothing was understated, neither the fashion nor the sound. New genres evolved: hip-hop, new wave, electronic dance music, hair metal and more. The ‘80s may have been a decade of contradictions but it took us from pessimism to opportunities. The exhibition SMILE is dedicated to the photographs and music that connects us to each other, Lynn Goldsmith. 

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Lynn Goldsmith

Lynn Goldsmith, the American artist, photographer and film director,
has been deeply involved in the music industry since the late 1960s. In the 1970s, Goldsmith established herself as a sought-after photographer, capturing intimate moments with the stars of the era. Her images graced iconic album covers for musicians such as Frank Zappa and Patti Smith.

SMILE presents a collection of Goldsmith's expressive music photographs from the 1980s, capturing the remarkable musical diversity of the decade. The exhibition showcases an array of photographic genres including portraits, documentary-style snapshots, promotional images, press photography and album cover artwork.

-  I see myself as an artist and I chose what tool to use based on what it is I want to accomplish. I’ve used the camera more than any other tool to express myself and my ideas. When making photographs of musicians who so many people worldwide look up to, it is my job to make the viewer feel closer to them as well as for me to help make the artist look the way the fans want to believe they look.
Lynn Goldsmith. 

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    Photo: Sid Schneider
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Museum24:Portal - 2024.03.00
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