RICHARD GERE: Talks About Photography in La Lettre de la Photographie's Weekend Agenda

Giza, 2005
Courtesy of the Gere Foundation
Photograph (c) Richard Gere

Cairo, 2010
Courtesy of the Gere Foundation
Photograph (c) Richard Gere

I was in this old Mosque and I just turned to my left and that shot was there. All the angles were right, all the lines were moving, everything was right. All I had to do was take a half step to my left. Everything lined up and I knew that was it. That was the shot...That’s a very complicated photograph; the dark areas, light areas, white against black, black against white. It’s very complicated and that’s a very straight...digital print made for me by John Paul Caponigro at his place up in Maine. – Richard Gere, Le Journal de la Photographie 4.30.2011

Cover Photograph: Pilgrim, Zansker, 1983
Pilgrim, Bulfinch Press, 1997

Richard’s photographs from “Pilgrim” are clearly made from the heart. They are not only pictures that you are informed by – but they are images you feel. Richard’s images speak to our soul by exuding spirituality, compassion, and atmosphere. Richard’s “Pilgrim” photographs formed by his experiences, defines what he represents, and documents his social, spiritual, and cultural encounters. The underlining thread of his photographs is his fondness for the people of Tibet as well as his extraordinary ability to document the livelihood of the enduring people who reside within these unfamiliar and mysterious places with dignified simplicity. – David Fahey, Fahey/Klein Gallery

Lobsang Tenzing, Daramsala, 1981
Photograph © Richard Gere, Courtesy of Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles

Ulan Bator (The Arrival of His Holiness), Mongolia, 1995
Photograph © Richard Gere, Courtesy of Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles

Angels, Shekar Monastery, Tibet, 1993
Photograph © Richard Gere, Courtesy of Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles

There are usually three shots. If it’s a difficult light situation like this where the shutters going to be open one, two, three seconds – from my own experience of my work, one of those three is going to be the one I want. It’s not always that one is sharper than another; whatever it is, one’s going to feel right to me if I do three of them. Sometimes it’s so dark, I can’t even see it, and I’m just sensing that there’s something there. There’s one in particular I took in a Monastery. It’s these two angels that are hovering there. (Angels, Shekar Monastery, Tibet, 1993) I could barely see anything when I took that shot, but I knew that the shot was there and I knew I had to take it “now.” Richard Gere, Le Journal de la Photographie 4.30.2011

Photography can open a doorway that can lead us into a new world, expands our horizons, and shows us exciting and challenging possibilities. Richard’s photographs allow us to engage the world and renew our perspective by reinterpreting what we think we know – leading us through that doorway. – David Fahey, Fahey/Klein Gallery

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I spoke with Richard Gere for Le Journal de la Photographie about his photographs, his book and exhibitions, and about his extensive photography collection...read the entire Interview here

Le Journal de la Photographie


Bruce Barone said...

That was a tremendous interview. Fascinating! It makes me wish I could meet Richard. On a spiritual level.

Marla H. Bane said...

Wonderful interview. I have always admired him as an actor and was delighted the day I found his book "Pilgrim" not to say there wasn't always a teeny bit of the "crush" factor either :)

Barbara Smoyer said...

Wonderful piece - had no idea Richard Gere is a photographer. Thank you so much for sharing!

Kurt Jordan said...

Excellent interview with great collection notes. Very committed to betterment.

Ray Grasse said...

I especially enjoyed the comments about Days of Heaven and Nestor Almendros--fascinating back-story.

Ellen Jantzen said...

Favorite quote "I don’t have any idea what I’m doing.....I just figured out how to do it the way I like it."

Unknown said...

Terrific interview! I love the anecdote of the Dalai Lama seeing the exhibition at the Menil, surreptitiously pulling Gere aside and telling him a photo isn't good bc it's not in focus!

Caio Fern said...

really good and inspiring article , i read this yesterday and got fascinated.

R Montalban said...

beautiful images

francisc vaida said...

....i'm stoned. !


and what magnificent doorways he has opened for us here with these images - and what wonderful doorways you have opened for us in the sharing of your experiences and these images -

Denny Cormier said...

‎"Pilgrim" continues to be one of my treasured photobooks, but I have known very little about Gere's serious commitment to the photo arts or about the photographers who influenced his work. Thank you for this in depth interview, Elizabeth. I hope that we can continue to see more or his work in published form in the coming years.

Rania Matar said...

It is a really beautiful interview. Thank you!

Unknown said...

A good read! Thank you!

What I liked most is the part about the picture being in the photographer's mind, not such a huge need for fancy this&thats.