When photographer Ann Summa arrived in Los Angeles in 1978, the city’s newly born punk scene was fertile territory for a young photographer; The Beautiful & the Damned is a collection of Summa's portraits of the musicians, artists and fans who made Los Angeles such a crucial part of punk history. Taken between 1978 and 1984, Summa’s photographs feature the Germs, the Screamers, X, the Cramps and the Gun Club, along with pioneering performance artists the Kipper Kids, Johanna Went and Laurie Anderson. (At the time, the audience for these avant-garde artists was primarily drawn from the underground music scene). Also featured are portraits of key artists from the two other cities — London and New York — that played a central role in the birthing of punk. Photographed in L.A. during their first U.S. tours are U.K. groups the Clash, Magazine, the Fall, the Slits, Bow Wow Wow and the Pretenders, among others, and New Yorkers Television, James Chance, Lydia Lunch and Talking Heads. Also included are portraits of artists who served as an inspiration to L.A. punks—Captain Beefheart, Iggy Pop, David Bowie—plus candid shots of unidentified audience members.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Ann Summa began taking photographs in the mid '70s while living in Japan. On returning to Los Angeles she launched a successful and ongoing career as an artist specializing in commercial and documentary work. Her photographs have been published in domestic and international publications including Artnews, Rolling Stone,The Los Angeles Times, and The New York Times, and since 1996 she's taught photography at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. The Beautiful & the Damned is her first book. She is presently working on Muxe: the Third Sex of Oaxaca, andSacred Faces, an anthology of spiritual teachers.
For information about photographic prints and portfolios please contact Ann Summa at www.annsumma.com.