Ralph Gibson and his Unique Relationship with the Leica

Ralph Gibson has achieved worldwide acclaim as a photographer for more than four decades. His bold, graphic style is instantly recognizable. As a consequence, photographers and educators look to him for inspiration. A champion of individual expression, Gibson urges photographers to develop a personal style by following their own instincts.

Gibson studied photography while in the US Navy and then at the San Francisco Art Institute. He began his professional career as an assistant to Dorothea Lange and went on to work with Robert Frank on two films. He has also had a lifelong fascination with books, and since the appearance in 1970 of “The Somnambulist”, his work has been steadily impelled towards the printed page. To date he has produced over 40 monographs, his most current projects being “State of the Axe” published by Yale University Press in Fall of 2008 and “NUDE” by Taschen, 2009. His photographs are included in over one hundred and fifty museum collections around the world, and have appeared in hundreds of exhibitions.

Ralph Gibson by Renato D'Agostin, 2007

Gibson’s awards include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as the Leica Medal of Excellence and the Silver Plumb Award from the Landmarks Preservation Committee. He is a Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres of France, and holds honorary doctorates from the University of Maryland and Ohio Wesleyan University. In 2007 he received The Lucie Award for Fine Art Photography. He has worked exclusively with the Leica for almost 50 years.

To see more of Ralph Gibson’s work, please visit his website: http://www.ralphgibson.com/.