Ken Schles (US, b. 1960) shows a selection from his large archive of photos: pictures he shot of diverse musicians such as Alicia Keys and Rod Stewart, but also Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and 16 Horsepower. With his photos he wants to provide the viewer with a deeper understanding, a richer experience, and offer insight into someone whom you will probably never meet and whose music you may or may not know.
Presently the recording industry and artists prefer slick images: illustration, theater, fiction. But Schles has striven to do something genuine, even though doing photo portraits always bends the truth. "I have tried to be an honest broker between musicians and the public, and to show real, perhaps even vulnerable individuals. You can look at these photos and think that you are seeing a number of famous rock stars. I don't do that. I see only people, just as tragic and as full of hope as you and I."
At the request of Noorderlicht Ken Schles wrote an essay about his personal experiences as a pop photographer.
Ken Schles and Noorderlicht have seen a lot of each other over the years. Schles has participated in Noorderlicht Photofestivals a number of times. In 2005 he had an exhibition in the Noorderlicht Photogallery with Promised Land.