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David Hamilton
British photographer and occasional film director

David Hamilton is born in 1933 at London where he grew up. His schooling was interrupted by World War II. As an evacuee, he spent some time in the countryside of Dorset, which inspired his work until today. After the war, Hamilton returned to London and finished school before moving to France where he has lived ever since.

At age 20, he went to Paris, where he worked as graphic designer for Peter Knapp of ELLE magazine. After becoming known and successful, he was hired away from ELLE by Queen magazine in London as art director. Hamilton soon realized his love for Paris, however, and after returning there became the art director of Printemps, the city's largest department store. Hamilton began photographing commercially while still employed, and the dreamy, grainy style of his images quickly brought him success.

His photographs were in demand by other magazines such as Realites, Twen and Photo. By the end of the 1960s, Hamilton's work had a recognizable style. His further success included many dozens of photographic books with combined sales well into the millions, five feature films, Long ago, Hamilton lived with Mona Kristensen, who was a model in many of his early photobooks and made her screen debut in Bilitis.

As much of Hamilton's work depicts early-teen girls, often nude, he has been the subject of some controversy and even child pornography allegations. This negative attention originated mostly from North America and Britain. The Guardian wrote "Hamilton's photographs have long been at the forefront of the "is it art or pornography?" debate.
In November 2016, David Hamilton was charged with rapes of young chidren in the 1970s. He commits suicide in Paris on November 25, 2016.
This end throws a unforgivable and black curtain on the work of David Hamilton.


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Created the July 14th 2011, Updated the January 8th 2017.
© Pierre J.