Russell James is defined by his fine-art photography series and his works have been exhibited in leading galleries around the world. His limited editions are highly sought after by many of the world’s most prominent collectors.
Over the past two decades, Australian born photographer Russell James’ images have become synonymous with provocative, unique perspectives of many of the most prominent people of our time in the worlds of entertainment, fashion and beauty. His works have appeared in leading publications such as Vogue, W, American Photo and French Photo, Marie Claire, GQ, and Sports Illustrated, a vast array of international journals, and ten fine art books and five solo books by world leading art book publisher teNeues Publications. In August 2007, Russell was awarded the Hasselblad Masters Award, and in 2009 Russell joined the prestigious ranks of Irving Penn and Helmut Newton as a resident artist of Camera Work, the world’s leading gallery for contemporary photography and vintage master works.
Russell’s diverse photographic achievements range from exhibiting for brands such as Hermèsin association with Guggenheim, to breakthrough advertising campaigns for global brands such as Rolex, Donna Karan International, Victoria’s Secret, Evian and Revlon, to emotional portraits of many of the world’s leading celebrities, musicians and supermodels, including Scarlett Johansson, Halle Berry, Gisele Bündchen, Faith Hill, The Black Eyed Peas, Rihanna, Barbra Streisand, Hugh Jackman, President Bill Clinton, Sir Richard Branson, and some sixty more. He has been the subject of solo photographic exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, Knokke (Belgium), Aspen, and Sydney.
Russell is also renowned for his fine art project entitled Nomad Two Worlds, a series inspired by the global consequences of cultural collision. Nomad Two Worlds is informed both by Australia’s ancient past and by an unfolding, present-day political narrative and, after expanding to include other countries and cultures (including Native American and Haitian collaborations), has become a global example of cultural collaboration and reconciliation in action. Since its launch in New York in 2009 with the support of Donna Karan, Hugh Jackman and the Australian Government, the collection has previewed in Melbourne (2009, National Gallery of Victoria), Los Angeles (2010, Pier 59 Studios; 2013, Guy Hepner Gallery), and Berlin (2011, Camera Work). The Nomad Two Worlds “Haiti” collection is also supported by the Clinton Global Initiative (of which James is a member), and has recently been showcased in Haiti, Washington, D.C. and London. In May 2013, James was honored with the “Western Australian of the Year – Arts & Culture” award.
Russell’s first solo photography book ‘Russell James’ (2009), with forewords by Heidi Klum and Donna Karan, is a three hundred page retrospective featuring some of Russell’s most iconic work with over 30 of the world’s most beautiful women and interesting people. It has been released in more than seventy countries. His second book entitled ‘V2’, with forewords by Victoria’s Secret President Edward Razek and Sir Richard Branson, was released by teNeues Publications in September 2010. Russell’s third book ‘Nomad Two Worlds’ (2012), with a foreword by Hugh Jackman, is a revealing biographic journey and features a stunning collection of the photography and collaborative artworks that have emerged from his fine art project Nomad Two Worlds. His fourth book, ‘A Virgin Island’ (2013), is a stunning collection of images that captures the spirit of one of the most beautiful places on Earth, Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island, featuring breathtaking shots of unspoiled nature interspersed with tastefully erotic masterpieces that Russell was inspired to create there. His fifth book, ‘Angels’ (2014), is another exceptional tribute to feminine beauty, offering an unprecedented and personal view into James’s most intimate portrait sittings with many of the models he met over the past fifteen years of photographing for Victoria’s Secret.
In addition to photography, James is frequently engaged as a director. His commercial work includes national spots for Gillette and Victoria’s Secret. His own works include the short art film ‘Sardinia’ (2005), a trilogy of stunning films in the Nomad Two Worlds collection, and ‘The Apology’ (2009) a short film featuring Hugh Jackman and many others with music executive produced will.i.am. He has been the subject of a 30-minute ABC documentary in Australia, featured on CNBC’s show “Best Jobs Ever”, and has been a guest on Good Morning America, Oprah, Access Hollywood and more in the US. In 2008, James hosted a nine part television series on photography.
Originally inspired by the rich natural landscapes of his homelands in Western Australia, and influenced by the provocative fashion style of London, Paris, Tokyo, Stockholm and Milan, James has created a unique blend of fashion and extreme environment as his signature trademark. James can often be found shooting on the shores of Caribbean beaches, in the outback of Australia, and amongst the ice flows of the Arctic Circle (as well as the more civilized realm of dramatic architecture, designer homes and studios in New York, Los Angeles, London and Paris).
Russell James presently resides in New York.