Morrison Hotel Gallery & Sports Illustrated Neil Leifer Exhibit

First Exhibition To Feature Renowned Sports Illustrated & LIFE Photographer – Neil Leifer

Morrison Hotel Gallery is pleased to announce the addition of a sports brand to their fine art photography galleries located in New York and Los Angeles, featuring a roster of renowned sports photographers including Neil Leifer, Walter Iooss, Ken Regan, Neal Preston, Theo Ehret and Michael Zagaris.

The kick-off exhibition and photographer’s reception for the sports brand, in association with Sports Illustrated, will take place on January 23rd at the Morrison Hotel Gallery’s SoHo location in New York City and will feature the esteemed work of photographer Neil Leifer (Sports Illustrated, LIFE, TIME). Mr. Leifer, who has shot record numbers of Olympic Games, World Soccer Cups, World Series, Super Bowls and heavyweight title fights, cites his favorite subject as that of the great heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali, who he has had the opportunity to photograph on nearly 60 different occasions.

Peter Blachley, owner of the Morrison Hotel Gallery, states “Our entry into fine art sports photography fits well with our brand and our customers’ needs. As we have demonstrated our success in offering fine art music photography, we are now excited to offer the most beautifully photographed sports images, from the most iconic and historically significant to the most esoteric as taken from the archives of the leading photographers in the field.”

Karen Carpenter, executive director at Sports Illustrated adds, “This partnership will tap into the deep emotion that music and sports fans share. We are excited about the opportunity this collaboration with the Morrison Hotel Gallery presents to Sports Illustrated.” 

About the Photographers:

Neil Leifer – Neil Leifer became a professional photographer while still in his teens. Beginning in 1960 as a freelancer, his pictures began regularly appearing in every major national magazine, including the Saturday Evening Post, Look, LIFE, Newsweek, Time and, most often, Sports Illustrated. Leifer was a staff photographer for Sports Illustrated and Time Magazine, and a contributing photographer at LIFE. By the time Leifer left in 1990, his photographs had appeared on more than 200 Sports IllustratedTime and People covers, the most covers ever published of one photographer’s work in Time, Inc. history. Leifer has published nine books, four of which have been collections of his sports photographs. His 1978 Abrams book Sports, has been hailed by many as the best of its kind ever.

Walter Iooss – Walter Iooss is an acclaimed photographer best known for his award-winning images of sports’ greatest athletes, including Michael Jordan, Kelly Slater, Tiger Woods, Scottie Pippen and Muhammad Ali. He has been called “the poet laureate of sports.” Walter began his photography career shooting for Sports Illustrated at the early age of 18 and earned his first cover only two years later. He has contributed to the magazine for more than 50 years and has also photographed for the magazine’s Swimsuit Issue for four decades. In 2004 he was awarded with the LUCIE Lifetime Achievement Award for Sports Photography. Iooss is also known for his music photography when he worked for Atlantic Records from 1968-1972 where his subjects included Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and James Brown.

Neal Preston – Although his versatility as a photographer extends to many genres, the following is clear: Neal Preston is one of the most highly respected photographers in the world. In 1980 he began a long relationship with People Magazine and to this day remains the most-assigned photographer in the history of the magazine, with almost 700 shoot days to his credit. In addition to dozens of People covers, he has shot covers of Newsweek, Time, and Rolling Stone with subjects as diverse as Nancy Kerrigan, Richard Nixon, and Marvin Gaye. A true sports fanatic, Preston has worked at six Olympics, from the 1984 Winter Games in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia to the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy. Preston has also photographed many other major sporting events including heavyweight title fights, the World Series, NBA and NFL playoff games, and World Cup soccer matches.

Ken Regan – While many are familiar with the late, great Ken Regan’s photography in the music realm, shooting such icons as The Beatles, Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones, his career actually began in the sports arena where he covered the World Series, Super Bowls, the Olympics, heavyweight champion fights, Hockey, Basketball, Tennis, Horse Racing, Auto Racing and other professional sports for Time, Sports Illustrated, LIFE and Newsweek. He photographed such athletes as Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, Wilt Chamberlain, Hank Aaron, Joe Namath, and Mario Andretti. Regan released the critically acclaimed book, Knockout: The Art of Boxing (Insight Editions) in 2007.

Theo Ehret –Theo Ehret (1922-2012) was the house photographer at downtown L.A.’s Olympic Auditorium from the mid-sixties until the early 1980s and his evocative work captured the enormous personalities of that era — Muhammad Ali and Roberto Duran, George Foreman and Freddie Blassie.  He shot up-and-comers (Sugar Ray Leonard) and down-and-outers (Sonny Liston).  He photographed the rise of heroic Latino fighters who inspired new immigrants from places like Mexico, Honduras, Panama and Nicaragua.  And just as importantly, he documented the colorful scene: the Battle Royales, Cage Matches, celebrities, mariachis, luchadores, dwarves, heels, and passionate fans. Ehret’s work is the subject of Benedikt Taschen’s mammoth volumeExquisite Mayhem: The Spectacular and Erotic Photography of Theo Ehret.  In addition, several of his shots of Muhammad Ali appeared in the landmark tome Greatest of All Time: A Tribute to Muhammad Ali (G.O.A.T.).

Michael Zagaris – AKA “the Z Man” started shooting professional sports in the ’70s. He began as a team photographer for the San Francisco 49ers in 1973, and the Oakland A’s in 1981, both of which he continues to shoot to this day. To date, Michael has photographed 34 Super Bowls, 12 World Series and 14 All Star games. His photos have appeared in numerous publications including on the cover of Sports Illustrated. He’s shot sports icons from Joe Montana to John Madden. Jim Carroll, author of the book Basketball Diaries used one of Michael’s portraits for the cover. Zagaris was also the band photographer for the Rolling Stones, The Who, Led Zeppelin — and the list of rock legends he captured on film goes on and on.

About The Morrison Hotel® Gallery 

Peter Blachley, a former record company executive, Richard Horowitz, a music industry professional, and Henry Diltz, a legendary music photographer, founded the Morrison Hotel Gallery in 2001. The gallery has since grown to become a major brand in fine art music photography and is respected amongst peers and artists alike. In February 2013, the Morrison Hotel Gallery will open its Los Angeles location at the Sunset Marquis Hotel, with a gallery space in the lobby as well as having photographs throughout the property of the hotel. Morrison Hotel Gallery also exhibits photography in key sports facilities and retail outlets throughout the United States.


Chris "MUG5" Maguire is a multimedia futurist that specializes in all things multimedia. From Record Production to Film Making Chris has worked with hi-end clients the world over. Chris is the Editor in Chief of both &