Herb Ritts

Herb Ritts began his photographic career in the late 70s and gained a reputation as a master of art and commercial photography. In addition to producing portraits and editorial fashion for Vogue, Vanity Fair, Interview and Rolling StonesRitts also created successful advertising campaigns for Calvin Klein, Chanel, Dinna Karan, Gap, Gianfranco Ferré, Gianni Versace, Giorgio Armani, Levi's, Pirelli, Polo Ralph Lauren and Valentino among others. Beginning in 1988 he directed numerous influential and award-winning music videos and commercials. His fine art photography has been the subject of exhibitions worldwide, with works residing in many significant public and private collections.

In his life and work, Herb Ritts was drawn to clean lines and strong forms. This graphic simplicity allowed his images to be read and felt instantaneously. His work often challenged conventional notions of gender or race. Social history and fantasy were both captured and created by his memorable photographs of noted individuals in film, fashion, music, politics, and society.

Ritts was committed to HIV/AIDS-related causes and contributed to many charitable organizations, among them amfAR, The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation , Project Angel Food, Focus on AIDS, APLA, Best Buddies, and Special Olympics. He was also a charter member on the Board of Directors for The Elton John AIDS Foundation.

Herb Ritts passed away on December 26th, 2002.

Selected solo exhibitions


„Herb Ritts: In Full Light“, Maison Européene de la Photographie, Paris, France

“Herb Ritts: The Rock Portraits”, Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, America „Herb Ritts: In Balance“, Palazzo della Regione, Mailand, Italy
“Herb Ritts: Work”, Sejong Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea



“Herb Ritts: Variants”, Camera Work Gallery, Berlin, Germany

„Herb Ritts: The Rock Portraits“, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum, Cleveland, America

“Herb Ritts”, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, America

“Herb Ritts: In Full Light”, Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, Russia


“Herb Ritts: In Full Light”, Fotografiska, Stockholm, Sweden

“Herb Ritts: Supermodel”, Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York, America



Herb Ritts: In Piena Luce”, Auditorium Parco della Musica, Rome, Italy

“Herb Ritts: Beauty and Celebrity”, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Oklahoma City, America

“Herb Ritts: LA Style”, The Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, America



“Herb Ritts: LA Style”, Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, America

“Herb Ritts: LA Style”, The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, America

“From The Archive”, Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America



“Herb Ritts: Celebrity and Fashion”, Huntsville Museum of Art, Huntsville, America

“Herb Ritts”, Galerie Edwynn Houk, Zurich, Switzerland

“Herb Ritts: Prints from the Private Archive”, Hamiltons Gallery, London, England

Herb Ritts”, Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York, America

“Herb Ritts”, Camera Work Gallery, Berlin, Germany



“Twenty-Five Years”, Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America



“HERB RITTS”, Hamiltons Gallery, London, England

 “Celebrity Portraits”,Fay Gold Gallery, Atlanta, America



“Herb Ritts: A Personal Vision”, Wessel + O’Connor Fine Art, Brooklyn, America



“Herb Ritts : BODY 1984-1999”, Staley-Wise Gallery, New York, America



„Herb Ritts”, Museum of Art & History, Shunan City, Japan

“Herb Ritts”, Daimaru Museum, Tokyo, Japan



“Herb Ritts Memorial Exhibition”,Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America

“Herb Ritts”, Daimaru Museum, Sapporo, Japan

“Herb Ritts”, Daimaru Museum Shinsaibashi, Osaka, Japan

“Herb Ritts”, Daimaru Museum, Kyoto, Japan



“Cartier“, Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milano, Italy

“Cartier”, NRW Forum, Düsseldorf, Germany





Selected group exhibitions



“Supermodels: Then and Now”, CWC Gallery, Berlin, Germany



“Beauty CULTure”, The Annenberg Space for Photography, Los Angeles, America



“Revealed: The Tradition of Male Homoerotic Art”, Central Connecticut State University Art Galleries, New Britain, America

“Thanks for Being With Us: Contemporary Art from the Douglas Nielsen Collection”,

Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, America

“Mick Jagger: Promenade Rock”, Recontres d’arles, Arles, France



“Ingres and the Moderns”, Musée Ingres, Musée National des Beaux-Arts du Québec, Québec City, Canada



“Vanity Fair: Photographs 1913-2008”, LACMA, Los Angeles, America

“This Side of Paradise: Body and Landscape in L.A. Photographs”, The Huntington Library, San Marino, America

“Vanity Fair: Photographs 1913-2008”, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, Scottland

“DARKSIDE: Photographic Desire and Sexuality Photographed”, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland

“Vanity Fair: Photographs 1913-2008”, National Portrait Gallery, London, England

„Herb Ritts and Horst P. Horst”, Robert Klein Gallery, Boston, America



“The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama”, Rubin Museum of Art, New York, America

“Classic Beauty: Part 2 – Photographs of the Male Nude”, Throckmorton Fine Art, New York, America

“OCULTOS (Hidden)”, Fundacion Canal, Madrid, Spain

“The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama”, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, America

“All For Art! Great Private Collections Among US”, Musée des Beaux Arts, Montreal, Canada



“The Year of Tibet Portfolio” (Group Exhibition), Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America

“Sans Regard: Collection Dancing Bear of W.M. Hunt”, Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland

„The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama”, Loyola University Museum of Art, Chicago, America




“25 Years: Fay Gold Anniversary Exhibition”, Fay Gold Gallery, Atlanta, America

“Pirelli Calendar Classics”, Fourth International Festival: Fashion and Style in Photography,

New Manezh Moscow State Exhibition Hall, Moscow, Russia

“Chronos: Time in Art From the 17th Century to the Modern Day”, Il Filatoio, Caraglio, Italy
“Woman of Many Faces : Isabelle Huppert”, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center (MOMA affiliate), Long Island City, America

“Speaking With Hands: Photographs from The Buhl Collection”,

Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain

“Sans Regard: Collection Dancing Bear of W.M. Hunt”, Les Rencontres d’Arles, Espace Van Gogh, Arles, France



“Body”, Staton Greenberg Gallery, Santa Barbara, America

“Speaking With Hands: Photographs from The Buhl Collection”, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, America

“The Fleeting Moment Between Photography and Cinema“, Museo Nazionale del Cinema, Turin, Italy

“Platinum”, Galleria abOrigena, Mailand, Italy

“Photo-Icons“, Arte Fino, Zürich, Switzerland

Italy “The Nude: Ideal and Reality, From the Invention of Photography to Today”,

Galleria d’Arte Moderna di Bologna, Bologna, Italy



“25th Year Anniversary” , Arthur Roger Gallery, New Orleans, America

“Masterworks in Platinum”, Camera Obscura, Denver, Canada

“Invito alla Fotografia”, Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milano, Italy



“Faces in Music 1952-2002”, Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America

“Photographs We Know – Iconic Images”, Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, America

“Archeology of Elegance“, International Hall of Photography, Hamburg, Germany

“The Portrait/The Nude III, Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles, Ameirca “Giorgio Armani”, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain