2016 INFINITY AWARD: LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT — David Bailey

Recipient
A film by MediaStorm

David Bailey is a British image maker widely considered a pioneer of contemporary photography. Internationally renowned, Bailey has produced some of the most famous photographic portraits of the last five decades. He bought his first camera while in the Royal Air Force as a teenager and was inspired to become a photographer after seeing Henri Cartier Bresson’s photograph, “Kashmir.” Bailey started working as an assistant to fashion photographer John French in 1959 and, shortly after, struck out on his own. He began working at British Vogue, shooting models like Jean Shrimpton and Penelope Tree, as well as celebrities ranging from the Beatles and The Rolling Stones to Mia Farrow and Catherine Deneuve.

Discarding the rigid rules of a previous generation of image makers, he channeled the energy of London's newly informal street culture into his work. In 1965, he published David Bailey’s Box of Pin-Ups, which is now seen as defining an era and shaped the future of photography. Bailey’s career has been varied, and, in 1966, he began to direct the first of hundreds of commercials. He has been recognized internationally for his skills as a filmmaker, and won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival for his Greenpeace commercial. Bailey has exhibited worldwide, the first of his landmark exhibitions in 1971 at the National Portrait Gallery, London.