Born in Liverpool, England, Julian Lennon began his artistic trajectory at a young age with an inherent talent for playing musical instruments. Those talents would soon broaden into the cinematic and visual arts. As an observer of life in all its forms, Julian developed his personal expression through such mediums as music, acting, and documentary filmmaking. In 2007, the door opened to yet another… photography, as Julian captured images during a musical tour for his half-brother, Sean.
‘Timeless’, his first photo exhibition, staged in Manhattan in September 2010, debuted Julian’s considerable talents behind the camera, as seen in photographs of Sean Lennon, U2 and his painterly landscapes. His ability to immortalize moments of intimacy and introspection is perhaps best captured in his portraits of Bono and Princess Charlene of Monaco. Taken while U2 were recording a new album, and ten minutes before Charlene Wittstock became a real life Princess, this small collection of images reveals how Julian “brings the subjects down to earth in a way few photographers have been able to accomplish,” notes celebrity photographer Timothy White. Around the same time came the establishment of Julian’s charity, The White Feather Foundation, and with it a new seed for documentary photography.
The principal goal behind Julian’s latest series, ’Horizon,’ is to marry photography with philanthropy. “I have always felt that I observed life in a different way than others, probably because my life has always been very different than most,” says Julian. His attuned worldview recently led him to see first-hand, the results of a Charity: Water and The White Feather Foundation initiative, bringing critically needed clean drinking water to parts of Africa. Simultaneous, his conservation and humanitarian efforts overlapped with support work being developed with Millennium Villages Project.
During these travels through Kenya and Ethiopia, Julian captured a wide variety of images, with the intention of inspiring viewers to learn about unique indigenous cultures and to help raise awareness of their plights. Its signature image, Horizon, juxtaposes man and nature in a meditative solo walk upon a majestic mountaintop. The beauty of landscape shots like Follow and Scopium find a complement in the humanity of others, among them: Reverence, with a group of tribal elders focused intently, during a community gathering, to discuss clean water and their environment; and Hope, a bright-eyed Ethiopian child, with a wise, yet insightful vision, of life yet to come….
Empathy, says Julian Lennon, is the bond that unites the planet. He offers, “We are all in this together, and hopefully someday, the world will realize that… and photography is one way to share, learn, appreciate and understand about other cultures and empathize with other peoples lives….”