Published by Reel Art Press, this stunning new publication is the definitive collection of Mark Shaw’s renowned photographs of the Kennedys. Most of the photographs featured in the book and exhibition have never been seen before. Shaw first photographed the Kennedys in 1959 for Life magazine. He subsequently developed a close friendship with the family that gave him extraordinary and informal access to their inner circle. During the following four years, Shaw captured them at their most relaxed: in Nantucket, Hyannis Port, Jacqueline's family home in Merrywood, Virginia and on The Amalfi Coast with the Agnellis. On the campaign trail in West Virginia, pre-White House at their first proper family home in Georgetown and at the star-studded inauguration gala. He became the Kennedys’ unofficial family photographer and his captivating shots capture some of their most intimate and candid moments. Among the most memorable photographs must be the image that was JFK's personal favorite; the photograph he told his family and friends he liked best. Perhaps somewhat poignantly, as the 50th anniversary of the assassination approaches, it is the image of Kennedy walking alone in the sand dunes at Hyannis Port which resonates, alongside a later iconic and moving image of the rider-less horse and the fallen leader’s reversed riding boots.
In his later years Mark Shaw also began filming commercials for television. He was the winner of many awards from the American TV commercial Festival for his work in commercials and from the Art Director's club for his earlier still work. Mark Shaw's Vanity Fair Lingerie and Chase Manhattan Bank's "Nest Egg" campaign are print advertising classics. Mark Shaw worked as a top print advertising photographer until his untimely death in 1969 at the age of 47. After his death, most of his work was hastily put into storage. All but a small number of photographs remained unseen for almost 30 years. In 1999, his only child, David Shaw, and David's wife, Juliet Cuming, moved the collection to Vermont, where they took on took on the job of creating the Mark Shaw Photographic Archive. In storage for almost 40 years, Mark Shaw's work is finally being unearthed, archived and made available for this exhibition.