Charles Gatewood photographs
Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
Charles Gatewood (1942-2016) was an American photographer, writer, and videographer, predominantly known for his photographs of Beat generation writers, American musicians and cultural icons, and alt- and countercultural figures and communities.
Gatewood was born in Elgin, Illinois in 1942. He attended University of Missouri in the 1960s and became interested in photography through the work of fellow student and photographer George W. Gardner. From 1964-1966, Gatewood lived in Stockholm, Sweden, where he apprenticed to a group of documentary photographers and worked as a darkroom technician for AB Text & Bilder news agency.
In 1966, Gatewood photographed Bob Dylan at a press conference and concert. One of Gatewood's photos from the event, "Dylan With Sunglasses and Cigarette," was syndicated soon after and published worldwide. The acclaim the photograph received inspired Gatewood to pursue a career in photography.
Gatewood returned to the U.S. in 1966 and worked briefly as an assistant at Jaffe-Smith photography studio in Greenwich Village, New York City, before beginning a freelance photography career. He took assignments at theManhattan Tribune, The New York Times, Rolling Stone, Harper's, Business Week, Time, and other publications. His work throughout the 1960s and 1970s included numerous portrait photographs of celebrities, civil rights leaders, musicians, and writers.
In January 1972, Gatewood travelled to London on assignment withRolling Stone writer Robert Palmer to interview William S. Burroughs. During this visit, Gatewood took a series of iconic portraits of Burroughs and established a friendship with the Beat writer. Gatewood's first photography book, Sidetripping, was published to wide acclaim in 1975, and contained an introduction by Burroughs as well as excerpts from his novels. The book chronicled scenes of 1970's American alternative culture, and Gatewood's continued interest in the subject garnered him the title "the anthropologist of the forbidden."
Gatewood continued to document the American underground in photographs, writings, and film throughout the rest of his career, with a strong focus on fetishism, body modification, sexuality, social protest movements, biker culture, Mardi Gras, and nature. He was the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships, and his work was exhibited widely from the 1960s through the 2000s. He lived and worked predominantly in San Francisco from 1987 until his death in 2016.
Charles Gatewood, Photographer of Extremes, Dies at 73 - The New York Times. Accessed December 18, 2020. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/05/arts/charles-gatewood-photographer-of-extremes-dies-at-73.html?_r=0 William S. Burroughs, Charles Gatewood, and Sidetripping | RealityStudio. Accessed December 18, 2020. https://realitystudio.org/interviews/william-s-burroughs-charles-gatewood-and-sidetripping/ "The Portable-Infinite - Atom. Accessed December 18, 2020. http://portable-infinite.blogspot.com/2016/04/rip-charles-gatewood-1942-2016.html You Gotta Put the Book On the Table | Art Practical. Accessed December 18, 2020. https://www.artpractical.com/event/you-gotta-put-the-book-on-the-table-art-by-charles-gatewood/
The collection comprises Charles Gatewood's photographs of musician Bob Dylan, Beat writer William S. Burroughs, artist Brion Gysin, journalist Bob Palmer, sexologist Annie Sprinkle, and body modification and performance artist Fakir Musafar. The photographs are predominantly black-and-white, save one portrait of Burroughs that is hand-colored with Marshall oils. The photographs are arranged alphabetically by title.
Box 1: Shelved in SPEC GRA 0099
Processed and encoded by Dustin Frohlich, October, 2020. Former collection number was PPI 0116.
- Burroughs, William S., 1914-1997
- Dylan, Bob, 1941-
- Gysin, Brion
- Musafar, Fakir, 1930-2018
- Palmer, Robert, 1945-1997
- Sprinkle, Annie, 1954-
- Counterculture--United States--History--20th century
- Portrait photography--United States--History--20th century
- Photography--United States--History--20th century
- Beats (Persons)
- Body marking
- University of Delaware Library Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
- Finding Aid Date
- 2020 October 29
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research.
- Use Restrictions
Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library, https://library.udel.edu/static/purl.php?askspec