Photojournalist, photographer, Harry Benson has been a witness to a great many of the major political and social events in modern history. With an uncanny instinct for being in the right place at the right time, his unforgettable photographs have found their way into the national consciousness.
His photographs of the Civil Rights movement of the 1960’s, Kosovo, and the Gulf War brought home the reality of the struggles. Benson witnessed the assassination of Robert Kennedy and caught the anguish of Ethel Kennedy with his camera. He was there to record the destruction of the Twin Towers. As a photographer of personalities, Benson has few peers. His work ranges from world leaders to pop stars, all portrayed with an immediacy and naturalness that speaks of a confidence and rapport between sitter and photographer. His photographs of the Beatles for LIFE Magazine are unsurpassed as a record of the early days of the group.
Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Benson began working for English newspapers in his early twenties. He moved to America and began working for LIFE Magazine in 1967 and remained with them until its demise. He has received numerous awards including the Commander of the British Empire, and his work has been exhibited extensively, the latest being Harry Benson: Seeing America at the Scottish Parliament in Glasgow. A retrospective exhibition of Harry Benson’s work was shown at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh, Kelvingrove Museum in Glasgow, and the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C. His books include Harry Benson Fifty Years in Pictures, Harry Benson’s Glasgow, Harry Benson’s America, Once There Was a Way The Beatles by Harry Benson, The Tivoli Gardens, and RFK A Photographer’s Journal. A documentary of his life and career titled Harry Benson: Shoot First opens December 2nd, 2016.