Born in Brooklyn, Gerry Deiter (1934-2005) began taking photographs of the city at a very early age. Surrounded by art and fashion during his teens, he was often in the company of famous New York fashion and commercial photographers. Soon he regularly had fashion spreads in Women’s Wear Daily and his work was on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar magazine. He was asked to teach at the famous Pratt Institute. He also photographed the jazz scene in New York and shot the first two album covers for Frank Zappa. In the 1960s, Deiter became involved in the anti-Vietnam war movement where he documented numerous protests. In 1968, he moved to Canada, where he settled in Montréal and continued to work as a photojournalist featured in publications such as Time Magazine and LIFE.

In 1969, Deiter was assigned by LIFE magazine to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Montréal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel during their protest against America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. He captured hundreds of images of the couple, in public and behind the scenes, as celebrities and visitors poured through the room. It was during this protest that Lennon wrote the song “Give Peace A Chance”, which he then recorded spontaneously with an unlikely crowd who just happened to be there at the time. Despite the media attention that the event received, Deiter’s photographs were never published in LIFE; the story was bumped in favour of another piece about the war. Instead, the photographs were filed away for 30 years, until 2001, when the events on September 11 inspired Deiter to try to rekindle the couple’s message of peace, love, and compassion.

These images eloquently captured the spirituality and the idealism that lay behind the media event. In 2005, Gerry Deiter wrote “Being present at the birth of that powerful anthem to peace had a special significance to me, helping me to embark on a new life, both professionally and spiritually. It was a time for revolution, of social and political upheaval that, like the words and music of “Give Peace a Chance”, echoes down through the decades and inspires us today to bring peace, compassion and justice to the world.”

By 1970, Deiter had moved to the West Coast where he became the first photographer to sail with the Greenpeace Too to protest nuclear testing on Amchitka Island. He was the founding editor of the newspaper, Prince Rupert This Week, and continued his news work as a contributing editor to the online news site, Peace, Earth & Justice News.

In 1969, Deiter was assigned by LIFE magazine to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Montréal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel during their “Bed-In” protest against America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. He captured hundreds of images of the couple, in public and behind the scenes, as celebrities and visitors poured through the room. The photographs are remarkable for the intimacy portrayed by Lennon and Ono, who felt comfortable with Deiter thanks to the photographer’s long-standing friendship with Ono, which predated her meeting the Beatle.

It was during this protest that Lennon wrote the song “Give Peace A Chance”, which he then recorded spontaneously with an unlikely crowd who just happened to be there at the time. Despite the media attention that the event received, Deiter’s photographs were never published in LIFE; the story was bumped in favour of another piece about the war. Instead, the photographs were filed away for 30 years, until 2001, when the events on September 11 inspired Deiter to try to rekindle the couple’s message of peace, love, and compassion.

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GERRY DEITER

Reading the Reviews

1969

Price:  $650 USD  stutus dot

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Gelatin silver print

16 x 20 inch

Edition: 2 of 100

Stephen Bulger Gallery

About this artwork…
Signed by Joan Athey, titled, dated, and editioned, in ink, au verso

Printed in 2009


[ SBG-GD-0003-C ]

Unframed

Born in Brooklyn, Gerry Deiter (1934-2005) began taking photographs of the city at a very early age. Surrounded by art and fashion during his teens, he was often in the company of famous New York fashion and commercial photographers. Soon he regularly had fashion spreads in Women’s Wear Daily and his work was on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar magazine. He was asked to teach at the famous Pratt Institute. He also photographed the jazz scene in New York and shot the first two album covers for Frank Zappa. In the 1960s, Deiter became involved in the anti-Vietnam war movement where he documented numerous protests. In 1968, he moved to Canada, where he settled in Montréal and continued to work as a photojournalist featured in publications such as Time Magazine and LIFE.

In 1969, Deiter was assigned by LIFE magazine to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Montréal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel during their protest against America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. He captured hundreds of images of the couple, in public and behind the scenes, as celebrities and visitors poured through the room. It was during this protest that Lennon wrote the song “Give Peace A Chance”, which he then recorded spontaneously with an unlikely crowd who just happened to be there at the time. Despite the media attention that the event received, Deiter’s photographs were never published in LIFE; the story was bumped in favour of another piece about the war. Instead, the photographs were filed away for 30 years, until 2001, when the events on September 11 inspired Deiter to try to rekindle the couple’s message of peace, love, and compassion.

These images eloquently captured the spirituality and the idealism that lay behind the media event. In 2005, Gerry Deiter wrote “Being present at the birth of that powerful anthem to peace had a special significance to me, helping me to embark on a new life, both professionally and spiritually. It was a time for revolution, of social and political upheaval that, like the words and music of “Give Peace a Chance”, echoes down through the decades and inspires us today to bring peace, compassion and justice to the world.”

By 1970, Deiter had moved to the West Coast where he became the first photographer to sail with the Greenpeace Too to protest nuclear testing on Amchitka Island. He was the founding editor of the newspaper, Prince Rupert This Week, and continued his news work as a contributing editor to the online news site, Peace, Earth & Justice News.

In 1969, Deiter was assigned by LIFE magazine to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Montréal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel during their “Bed-In” protest against America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. He captured hundreds of images of the couple, in public and behind the scenes, as celebrities and visitors poured through the room. The photographs are remarkable for the intimacy portrayed by Lennon and Ono, who felt comfortable with Deiter thanks to the photographer’s long-standing friendship with Ono, which predated her meeting the Beatle.

It was during this protest that Lennon wrote the song “Give Peace A Chance”, which he then recorded spontaneously with an unlikely crowd who just happened to be there at the time. Despite the media attention that the event received, Deiter’s photographs were never published in LIFE; the story was bumped in favour of another piece about the war. Instead, the photographs were filed away for 30 years, until 2001, when the events on September 11 inspired Deiter to try to rekindle the couple’s message of peace, love, and compassion.

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