In the wide spectrum of Chicago's music scene, we've produced far more than just a multitude of talented song makers and stage takers. Paul Natkin has cemented himself as a legendary name in the industry but in a much different context. If not for the Chicago native, some of music's most legendary images wouldn't exist. The son of noted photojournalist Robert Natkin, Paul has been shooting famous performers for more than four decades.
A collection of his life's work "Superstars" comes to the Ed Paschke Art Center (5415 W. Higgins Ave.) this Friday, May 1, and runs through June 14. It will feature 20 of Natkin's best recognized prints in both color and black and white.
Though he's most commonly recognized as a "rock photographer," Natkin has captured an incredibly wide range of artists in his time from Miles Davis to Ice Cube to Ozzy Osborne to Buddy Guy to Prince.
"In June of 1984, I was invited up to Minneapolis to photograph Prince's birthday party the week that the movie [and the album] ‘Purple Rain' came out," Natkin is quoted explaining. "I went up there thinking I was going to have to fight my way through a scrum of photographers at the front of the stage. When I got there I found out that I was the only photographer allowed in the building that night. Prince seemed to play right to my camera the whole night."
He's been featured in People, Playboy, Ebony and Entertainment Weekly but "Superstars" is your chance to catch his work in full scale. This is the first exhibition exclusively highlighting Natkin's work at The Ed Paschke Art Center in Jefferson Park, which was opened last year, and rest assured that all of the selections were hand chosen by the photographer himself.
The museum is free and open to the public daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Photos - Judas Priest, Bob Marley, Bruce Springsteen, James Brown - by Paul Natkin