The best of Harry Benson goes on show in Glasgow

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From Donald and Melania Trump draped across their Manhattan home to two girls playing in a litter-filled back court, photographer Harry Benson CBE effortlessly captured life in all its forms.

Now an exhibition of some of the finest works of the Glasgow photo journalist will go on show in his home city this weekend.

Let Glasgow Flourish. PIC: Harry Benson.

Let Glasgow Flourish. PIC: Harry Benson.

Benson’s iconic takes on world history will sit along side rarely-seen shots of city street life at Pollok House from Saturday, May 19.

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The powerful collection captures events from the assassination of Senator Robert F Kennedy in a Los Angeles hotel to the Meredith March Against Fear, a major event in the history of the civil rights movement, which was attended by Martin Luther King.

A number of ‘off-duty’ celebrity shots are also included, from a picture of Dolly Parton applying her lip gloss to a touching image of Sir Paul McCartney playing the piano with his daughter, Stella, sitting on his knee.

Dolly Parton gets ready for showtime. PIC: Harry Benson.

Dolly Parton gets ready for showtime. PIC: Harry Benson.

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From the rich and the powerful, to the poor and innocent, Benson captured them all with a number of photographs of Glasgow children among the most potent in the exhibition.

The show is being mounted in the new gallery space at Pollok House on Glasgow’s Southside

Fritha Costain, business manager for Glasgow and West at the National Trust for Scotland, which owns the property, said: “Harry Benson’s work is seminal.

Civil rights campaigners at the 1966 Meredith March Against Fear. PIC: Harry Benson.

Civil rights campaigners at the 1966 Meredith March Against Fear. PIC: Harry Benson.

“He managed to pre-empt important events in world history and capture them in his inimitable style through his photographs. Harry really got under the skin of his subjects, tapped into their spirit, and had an uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time.

“This exhibition is a celebration of Benson coming home to Glasgow. There hasn’t been a display of Harry’s work in his home town for years, and we’re excited to host this event at Pollok House in the months ahead.”

Harry Benson, now 88, first travelled to the USA with The Beatles in 1964, during their inaugural tour of the country.

His pictures have since appeared in Life, Vanity Fair, and The New Yorker, while he has also taken more than 100 cover shots for People magazine.

Glasgow boys in a fountain, 1956. PIC: Harry Benson.

Glasgow boys in a fountain, 1956. PIC: Harry Benson.

Paul McCartney with his daughter Stella. PIC: Harry Benson.

Paul McCartney with his daughter Stella. PIC: Harry Benson.

Muhammad Ali and The Beatles. PIC: Harry Benson.

Muhammad Ali and The Beatles. PIC: Harry Benson.