Art Basel Miami Beach

Julian Lennon Talks Art Basel, Miami 20 Years Ago, and Why It's Never Too Late for Goodbyes

​A cheap lead for this story might've included a Beatles song reference or the name John Lennon. But that'd be unfair to Julian Lennon, the remarkable photographer behind "Timeless," a collection of 30 hand-signed portraiture and landscape photographs edited by the artist himself.

Last night, Lennon debuted his critically acclaimed work at Adrienne Arsht Center's Next Generation Green Room as part of the 2010 Art Basel week in Miami. The bulk of the exhibit focuses on Lennon's landscape photography, however several portraits of radio rock royalty U2 in the studio and a handful of Sean Lennon portraits are also on display.

We caught up with the photographer last night and discussed Miami's Art Basel, the Magic City 20 years ago, and how exhausting press junkets can be. That's right, no mention of his famous dad or the song Paul McCartney dedicated to young Lennon after his parent's divorce. Why? Because he told Deco Drive it's boring to talk about.

Julian Lennon: Today is the main promotional day. I am sort of popping in and out of the show here at the Arsht Center -- and at Scope too -- over the next few days

You must be exhausted, no?

It's pretty tiring, yes.

Is this your first time in Miami?

I did a gig here; I was on a world tour about 20 years ago. I did something somewhere. I remember I had fun (laughs) I'm hoping to replicate that.

What are your thoughts on Basel thus far?

I'm honored to be a part of this scene, so to speak, but also to have an actual chance to go and check out some of the great work. It's not often I get to do that. Normally when you do an exhibition like this, you know, you're in one location -- it's not part of a community of artist. This is really quite a unique experience to be able to exhibit here.

Were you familiar with Basel, or is this your first experience?

It was only, actually, after the exhibition in New York -- my first, the opening one -- that I was told about Art Basel. And then next thing I know I'm being invited to come down and exhibit here, and I went, wow, that's pretty cool.

Interesting, that exhibit only wrapped up about a month ago; how much prep time did "Timeless" get for the Miami exhibit?

Fortunately the majority of the show, (the) prints, were already available from the show we did in New York. I was very fortunate that the people involved here -- the organizers -- really went to town on trying to accommodate the work. This room was entirely different before I arrived, I mean, they built walls.

So you had no idea what to expect in terms of the room?

I knew the rough shape of the room, but until you're actually in the room you never know how it's actually going tp pan out, and how it's going to look.

Of all the pieces on display, can you choose a favorite?

Impossible. Like we're fans of all kinds of music, I'm a fan of all kinds of imagery too. Each (photograph) is a baby of mine that I love in some way, shape, or form.

You mentioned music; music has always played an important role in your life. Are you working on any new material?

I'm actually releasing an album next year called Everything Changes. It's been finished for three years and I figured I'm doing (photography) now, might as well (release the album) as well.

What's next in terms of photography for you?

One of the things I'm going to be doing is literally sitting down for a good month or two and editing, and editing, and editing, and going through more work with being a professional photographer in mind now that I've been through this experience. I had no idea the actual amount of work that went into it. Now that I've done this and been through the experience of putting a show together, I see that there's potential in some of the other work that I've done to become shows within their own right.

"Timeless" by Julian Lennon, is free and open to the public from noon to 10 p.m. The exhibit will run until Saturday, December 5, at the Adrienne Arsht Center's Next Generation Green Room (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami). For more Art Basel events click here.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Victor Gonzalez
Contact: Victor Gonzalez