“Paul McCartney Photographs 1963-64 Eyes of the Storm” photo exhibition in New York, USA

May 3 - August 18, 2024
Timeline More from year 2024
Location:
Brooklyn Museum, New York City, USA

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About

The National Portrait Gallery in London exhibited a temporary photography collection called “Paul McCartney Photographs 1963-64 Eyes of The Storm” from June 28 to October 1, 2023. The exhibition showcased a series of photographs taken by Paul McCartney himself from December 1963 to February 1964. These photographs coincided with the emergence of Beatlemania and were published in a photography book title “1964: Eyes Of The Storm” in June 2023.

Following its showcase in London, the exhibition traveled to Norfolk, where the Chrysler Museum of Art in the United States hosted it first from December 2023 to April 2024.

The exhibition was then presented in New York from May 3 to August 18, 2024, then moved to Tokyo, and Portland.


From Paul McCartney.com, January 23, 2024:

The Brooklyn Museum Announces Paul McCartney Photographs 1963–64: Eyes of the Storm  – ⁠On view May 3–August 18, 2024

As The Beatles captured the hearts of millions, Paul McCartney captured it all on his Pentax film camera. Paul McCartney Photographs 1963–64: Eyes of the Storm takes visitors inside the 1963–64 frenzy of Beatlemania, as the band’s first U.S. tour skyrocketed them to global fame. More than 250 of Paul’s photographs, recently rediscovered in his archives, reveal his singular vantage point at the centre of this whirlwind of attention and adoration illuminating both the historical, and the personal, moments Paul and his bandmates experienced together. First on view at the National Portrait Gallery in London, England, the exhibition makes its New York debut at the Brooklyn Museum, opening May 3, 2024, supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies.  

“Since first arriving in New York in February 1964, Paul McCartney has built a strong, everlasting connection to the city. His vibrant photographs from The Beatles’ first visit capture the energy of the city, the excitement of the American fans, and the frenzy of the band’s status as celebrities. Yet the images also record The Beatles’ fun and delight with each other. Through McCartney’s lens, we feel the intensity of being at the centre of such extraordinary events,” says Catherine Futter, Director of Curatorial Affairs and Senior Curator of Decorative Arts. 

In an immersive installation of photography, video clips, and archival material, Eyes of the Storm traces the period when The Beatles played concert halls in Liverpool and London and began to tour internationally, first to Paris and then to the United States. Paul’s photographs convey the intensity of the band’s touring schedule in the U.S., as the Fab Four were swept from concerts to hotels to the road with rabid fans and paparazzi at their heels, from New York and Washington, DC, to Miami. The band’s arrival in New York signalled a turning point in popular culture, as their first televised performance on The Ed Sullivan Show was watched by around seventy-three million people and launched The Beatles into superstardom.  

Paul’s explorations in photography reflect his commitment to both the musical and visual arts. The range of work, from portraiture and landscape photos to documentary images, reveals Paul’s familiarity with the formal styles of early 1960s photography. References to New Wave, documentary filmmaking, and photojournalism can be found across the exhibition.  

Eyes of the Storm not only showcases Paul’s artistic versatility but also serves as a personal and historical archive. In addition to documenting the demands of touring and nonstop media attention, the photographs evoke an affectionate family album, picturing his fellow band members, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, at a time when their lives were changing irrevocably.Theexhibition gives visitors a highly personal glimpse into an extraordinary time period of one of music’s enduring legends. 

Paul McCartney Photographs 1963–64: Eyes of the Storm has been organised by the National Portrait Gallery, London, England, in collaboration with Paul McCartney. It is curated by Paul McCartney with Sarah Brown for MPL Communications and Rosie Broadley for the National Portrait Gallery. The presentation at the Brooklyn Museum is organised by Catherine Futter, Director of Curatorial Affairs and Senior Curator of Decorative Arts, and Jennie Tang, Executive Assistant to the Deputy Director of Art and the Director of Curatorial Affairs. 


From Paul McCartney.com, January 23, 2024: Fans, press, and police await The Beatles’ arrival at the Plaza Hotel, 5th Avenue, photographed from the car, February 1964.
From Paul McCartney on Facebook – (c) 2024 MPL Communications Ltd/ Photographer: Theo Wargo.
From Theo Wargo on Instagram – Spent some time this week with @paulmccartney at the @brooklynmuseum at his photo exhibit. Very chill and fun experience. The exhibit is really great, full of amazing behind the scenes photos of an early American @thebeatles tour. Check it out if you can
From Facebook – Mike Bloomberg and Paul McCartney

To promote the exhibition, Paul McCartney released a video that features a Beatles fan named Adrienne. The footage of Adrienne was originally recorded by CBS News in 1964 where she expressed her love for Paul McCartney.

And Paul McCartney, if you are listening, Adrienne from Brooklyn loves you with all her heart.

Beatles fan Adrienne

In response to this, a present-day Paul McCartney replied to Adrienne in a video message. He mentioned that he is currently in Brooklyn, New York for the exhibition and invited Adrienne to come and see it.

Hey, Adrienne, it’s Paul. Listen, I saw your video. I’m in Brooklyn now. I’m in New York. I finally got here. We got an exhibition, photo exhibition. Come along and see it!

Paul McCartney

The full version of the Adrienne video was also included in Ron Howard’s 2016 documentary “Eight Days a Week — The Touring Years.

I don’t care what anybody thinks! I’ll love the Beatles forever and I’ll always love them. Even when I’m 105 and an old grandmother I’ll love them. And Paul McCartney, if you are listening, Adrienne from Brooklyn loves you with all her heart.

Beatles fan Adrienne

RollingStone magazine then did some research, and found out who Adrienne was and what happened to her:

Now, after reviewing photos and video footage, as well as public records verifying various biographical details consistent with what we know about “Adrienne from Brooklyn,” Rolling Stone can exclusively reveal what is quite possibly the identity of the real Adrienne from Brooklyn — and though her story does not offer the ending Beatles fans and TikTokers were hoping for, it nonetheless serves as a testament to the indefatigable power of fandom. 

“When I saw it, when I heard it, I was like, ‘that’s Mommy,’” Nicole D’Onofrio tells Rolling Stone on Saturday. 

A mother of four from Staten Island, D’Onofrio originally saw the interview featuring the young woman she believes to be her mother while scrolling through TikTok with her seven-year-old daughter. “I was like, ‘Wait a second. Play that again,’” she says. She sent it to her three older siblings, including her brother John. “It looked like her and sounded like her, with that heavy Brooklyn accent,” John, a retired NYPD officer, tells me. “We were like, ‘Oh my God, mommy is Adrienne from Brooklyn.’”

Adrienne D’Onofrio was born on July 29, 1951, the daughter of a Swedish father and an Italian mother. According to John, her father died when she was 11 years old, and she and her two older siblings were primarily raised by their mother in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, then a middle-class, predominantly Italian neighborhood. “She never left Brooklyn,” John tells me. 

Because Adrienne’s mother worked long hours, John says, she spent a lot of time playing hooky, skipping school to see Murray the K at the Fox Theatre. John says he distinctly remembers her telling him about sneaking out of school to see the Beatles arrive in New York City on their first trip to America, the moment that was captured in the iconic CBS News footage. “I remember her saying she got on the train to see them, and it was only a nickel, and if you had 50 cents you were able to get a 10-cent hot dog and a pack of cigarettes,” he says. […]

In September 1992, […] Adrienne was diagnosed with lymphoma. […] She died in 1992, at the age of 41. 

After Adrienne died, the siblings say, they found all of their mother’s old Beatles records from the closet — the only records, John says, their mother would play around the house (though she did also like the Rolling Stones and Herman’s Hermits). One of them, John says, had “Adrienne and Paul” scrawled on the sleeve, a heart drawn around it. Adrienne had also gifted her niece Beatles commemorative coins celebrating their 1964 trip to the United States, photos of which were shared with Rolling Stone. […]

From Adrienne From Brooklyn: Family Believes Mom Is Paul McCartney Fangirl (rollingstone.com), May 4, 2024

Last updated on June 8, 2024

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