The Fahey/Klein Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition showcasing the photographs by Jesse Alexander of the Monaco Grand Prix and its spectators from 1955 to 1971. Attended by celebrities like Steve McQueen and royalty, such as Princess Grace and her husband Prince Rainier of Monaco, the Monaco Grand Prix at this time epitomized the glamour, prestige, and suspense of a thrilling European motorsport race. With the apartments and glamorous homes of Monte Carlo forming an incredible backdrop, Jesse Alexander’s photographs document the impressive cars, legendary drivers, and anxious spectators who made up the crowds. As spectators look on, the cars wind their way through the tight hair pin turns and by the casinos and hotels lining the narrow streets of Monte Carlo.
For over fifty years, Jesse Alexander has traveled the world documenting motorsport’s most iconic races, legendary drivers, and memorable moments. One of the first assignments to spark Jesse Alexander’s career was photographing the arduous and dangerous Mexican road race, the Carerra Panamerica Mexico, in 1953. “1953 is when the whole thing began for me. One thing was clear— I loved cars. Another love of mine was photography. So, with these two passions, the choice seemed obvious— to marry the two.” In 1954, Jesse moved his family to Europe, in order to cover the European circuit, which would later become recognized as a golden age of motorsports.
The renowned racecar driver, Stirling Moss, describes working with Jesse Alexander in the introduction of Driven, “The drivers and participants who worked with Jesse during his decade on the European circuits knew him not simply as a highly regarded motor racing photographer, but also as a real enthusiast and a gentleman. He understood motor racing and shared our passion for it. This, as much as his talent, made him ‘one of us’.” (Introduction to “Driven”, Chronicle Books)
Jesse Alexander’s photographs have been exhibited in museums and galleries internationally. His work has appeared in numerous publications such as Car & Driver, Road & Track, Sports Illustrated, Newsweek, and Automobile. Jesse Alexander’s publications on racing photography and the history of motorsports include “Driven” (Chronicle Books, 2000), “Portraits” ((David Bull Publishing, 2008), and “Inside the Archives (David Bull Publishing, 2010). Jesse’s work was included in an exhibition of sports photography during the 1996 Summer Olympics. Jesse lives and works in Santa Barbara, California.
Reception for the Artist Thursday, June 7, 7-9 pm