The Art Plug Editorial: David Gamble
Checking in With David Gamble
London native David Gamble is a distinguished artist with one of the most unique portfolios in existence. Whether he is photographing or painting, his depictions hone in on an energy like none other, grasping the nostalgic spirit of a moment in time.
Gamble’s impact holds true with exhibitions and permanent collections in prestigious galleries around the world, displayed as intended for people of all walks of life to experience. His images are a study of the human condition, while brightly reflecting his own personality through his elegant approach to photography.
Gamble graduated from Ealing School of Art in London. He then pursued postgraduate studies at the Association of Photographers where he met American photographer and director, Neal Slavin. Gamble was an assistant during the publication of Slavin’s book of photographer called, Britons.
Throughout the 80’s and 90’s Gamble worked as an international editorial photographer for publications like the Observer, the Independent, Life, Fortune, the New Yorker, and the Sunday Times.
He perfected his craft and was recognized for his achievements by earning the Kodak Award for Best Photographer in Europe, alongside a World Press Photo Award in 1988 for his portrait of Stephen Hawking. That photo was used as the cover of Hawking’s famous exploratory novel.
David Gamble has also photographed illustrious figures like Margaret Thatcher and Dalai Lama.
1987 – David Gamble’s renown in the photography world earned him a special phone call from Andy Warhol’s manager Fred Hughes. The call came shortly after the fierce artist’s death, and it included an exclusive invitation for Gamble to photograph Warhol’s estate.
Fittingly enough, Gamble grew up on Warhol’s infamous pop art. He was ecstatic about having the opportunity to capture Warhol’s untouched sanctuary.
“When I was 13 or 14 I discovered Andy Warhol and pop art,” Gamble said. “I remember painting the coke bottle as a kid, using the colors to make it pop. It totally influenced my way of thinking about painting and art. That’s why I did it.”
As the world mourned Warhol’s death, Gamble focused on capturing Andy’s essence among his historic East 66th Manhattan apartment. From chic furniture to a heap of personal effects, the apartment held iconic items seen by few.
“I was interested in trying to find him in his natural, normal environment,” Gamble said. “I wanted to find something that showed what Andy was like; how he thought, especially in his own house.”
The result was a myriad of photographs peering into the mind and life of one of the greatest artists of all time. Gamble perfectly captured Warhol’s perplexing personality through the series of photos – from Andy’s warehouse to his medicine cabinet.
“I think the pictures stand out because I went into the house with a certain attitude. I was trying to find Andy in those pictures. That’s why I asked if I could get ahold of his glasses. Who knew what Andy looked like without his glasses? He could probably walk around and nobody would recognize him. I didn’t know that he wore a wig, I learned a lot about him,” Gamble said.
Andy Warhol’s Medicine Cabinet – Now an important historical artifact in its own right. The medicine cabinet shares a vivid imagination of Warhol’s eccentricity. Each product reveals Warhol’s preoccupations with his own health and image. Hailed as the most intimate portraits of one of the most important artists in history.
Andy Warhol’s Kitchen – One of the most iconic images of Gamble’s incredible series showing how Warhol’s bold inspiration often came from the simplest of household items. The Kitchen is an unblemished display of Warhol’s body of work; a magnificent exhibit of colors and rhythm.
These historic photographs speak for themselves. No amount of words can really gauge the significance of the images captured by Gamble.
“He has always been a presence in my life, in some shape or form. This just seemed like an extension of my thinking,” Gamble said.
Two of the photos were recently auctioned off at Sotheby’s New York location during a week-long event, 30 years after the auction of Warhol’s estate.
“It’s amazing that we still talk about Andy and these pictures 30 years after I took them, probably because – well, I didn’t know this at the time, but I was one of the few photographers in there,” Gamble said.
Gamble now lives and works out of New Orleans.
David Gamble’s ability to capture the human condition is reflected in the legion of pictures he shot over the years. His friendly demeanor and humble enthusiasm further solidify his own legendary status as both an artist and person.
Not many people have the opportunity to meet icons, but Gamble was able to capture their human spirit so that any generation can feel their presence for the rest of time.