In November 1986 I went to America for the first time. The reason was to work with renowned photographer Anton Corbijn on some visual themes that we wanted to explore as possibilities for the cover of next U2 album. The working title was, “The Two Americas”.
In a case of ‘cart before the horse’, the title was changed, as one particular location resonated with the band and us. It was the presence of that lone tree in the desert that struck a chord, and of course, the album was then known as ‘The Joshua Tree’.
Anton had visited various possible sites the previous week and we had mapped out a route that took us from Reno, Nevada to a place called, Bodie, a ghost town in the hills east of Sierra Nevada. It was a preserved national historic landmark and was bitterly cold with snow on the ground when we arrived there. From that chilly climate we traveled through the heat of Death Valley, to such seemingly romantic twilight roadside locations as the Harmony Motel.
During the shoot, I had an Olympus XA rangefinder and one single roll of 35mm film. I photographed a number of images during rest periods or as the band prepared for the next set-up. I would wander off to see what was around a corner or over the next hill, and filled that roll with inquisitive snapshots. I returned to Ireland, had the roll developed and a contact sheet printed. The negatives were subsequently misplaced and all that remained was the contact sheet. At the beginning of 2017, U2 announced they would return to this landmark album, with a stadium tour. At the same time I was rearranging my archive, and in a great moment of serendipity, I found the lost negatives.
The images resonated with me, bringing me back to that time, reminding me of how far I have come and providing an alternative look at what became an iconic set of images. I am delighted to be able to share these images, beautifully printed in collaboration with Dominic Turner, at Exhibit A.
Limited, signed, numbered editions of 15, with stamp and certificate.
Archival Pigment Prints on Hahnemuehle Bamboo paper 290gsm.
Unframed, paper size 75cm x 50cm, image size 70cm x 33cm.
€500 per print, plus shipping(available worldwide)
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Launching in Bi Urban, Stoneybatter date TBA.
Available for private viewing in Dublin, Ireland. Message : firstname.lastname@example.org