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Catalogue No.HSFZ001
LocationBrussels
Date1974
Print QualityFine Art Digital Print

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Frank Zappa
by Herman Selleslags
Frank Zappa, Brussels 1974. Open edition
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Frank Vincent Zappa (December 21, 1940 – December 4, 1993) was an American composer, singer-songwriter, electric guitarist, record producer and film director. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa wrote rock, jazz, orchestral and musique concrète works.
He also directed feature-length films and music videos, and designed album covers. Zappa produced almost all of the more than 60 albums he released with the band The Mothers of Invention and as a solo artist. While in his teens, he acquired a taste for percussion-based avant-garde composers such as Edgard Varèse and 1950s rhythm and blues music. He began writing classical music in high school, while at the same time playing drums in rhythm and blues bands; he later switched to electric guitar. He was a self-taught composer and performer, and his diverse musical influences led him to create music that was often impossible to categorize. His 1966 debut album with The Mothers of Invention, Freak Out!, combined songs in conventional rock and roll format with collective improvisations and studio-generated sound collages. His later albums shared this eclectic and experimental approach, irrespective of whether the fundamental format was one of rock, jazz or classical. His lyrics—often humorously—reflected his iconoclastic view of established social and political processes, structures and movements. He was a strident critic of mainstream education and organized religion, and a forthright and passionate advocate for freedom of speech, self-education, political participation and the abolition of censorship. Zappa was a highly productive and prolific artist and gained widespread critical acclaim. He had some commercial success, particularly in Europe, and for most of his career was able to work as an independent artist. He also remains a major influence on musicians and composers. Zappa was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 and received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997. Zappa was married to Kathryn J. "Kay" Sherman from 1960 to 1964. In 1967, he married Adelaide Gail Sloatman, with whom he remained until his death from prostate cancer in 1993. They had four children: Moon Unit, Dweezil, Ahmet Emuukha Rodan and Diva Thin Muffin Pigeen. Gail Zappa manages the businesses of her late husband under the name the Zappa Family Trust.
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Herman Selleslags photographed more than half a century of national and international events. His photographs are historical documents, mostly in black and white, sometimes in color. He works in almost all circumstanceswith the available light and therefore hardly ever used flash.
His clients included Belgian Magazine Humo, Vrij Nederland and the Volkskrant, but also Knack, Die Zeit and the Times turned to the images of the Antwerp photographer. Then there is the "free" work; photos that are not in order were made, but out of personal interest arose. Selleslags was not limited to one area of photography. He made to documentary and reportage photography, but also to portrait, sports and music photography. Among his best known work belongs: The Magical Mystery Tour film set shots where he was the only photographer allowed. He photographed numerous celebrities: Jean-Paul Sartre, John Lennon, Mick Jagger, Ike and Tina Turner, The Ramones, Frank Zappa, Lou Reed, Pink Floyd ... (and from the Low Countries: Eddy Merckx, Johan Cruijff , Rik Van Looy, Freddy Maertens, Bobbejaan Blades, Jan Decleir, Julien Schoenaerts, Hugo Claus, Panamarenko, Harry Mulisch, Gerard Reve, WF Hermans, Jeroen Brouwers ...)
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