Rolling Stone Celebrates 50 Years in Print

Rolling Stone magazine commemorates its 50th Anniversary with a dazzling coffee-table book, 50 Years of Rolling Stone, recently published by Abrams. Combining iconic artwork with excerpted articles and historic interviews, the book gathers many artists who have been featured in the pages of Graphis magazine—including such legends as Mark Seliger, Fred Woodward, Herb Ritts, Albert Watson, and Matt Mahurin. Below is a sampling of the book’s remarkable imagery.

The flying shot of Tina Turner (above right) by fashion shooter Steven Meisel graced the cover of Rolling Stone: The Photographs, published in 1993 during the magazine’s art direction under Graphis Master Fred Woodward. The new book (above left) has a typographic cover featuring the “R” from the Rolling Stone nameplate, designed by Jim Parkinson and adopted by art director Roger Black prior to Woodward’s arrival. Photograph © Steven Meisel, courtesy Abrams

The above portraits of Willie Nelson and Ringo Starr were created by Mark Seliger, who served as Rolling Stone‘s chief photographer from 1992 to 2001. As a rising star, Seliger was profiled in Issue 277 of Graphis. Now a freelancer for publications including GQ and Vanity Fair, Seliger created a book with Fred Woodward called Listen, which won a Gold Award in the 2012 Graphis Design AnnualPhotographs © Mark Seliger, courtesy Abrams

The late, great photographer Herb Ritts enjoyed a close friendship and visual collaboration with Madonna, whom he captured in a playful mood at above left. “That whole day we fooled around, really for ourselves,” Ritts recalled in a 1997 profile in Issue 310 of Graphis. “It’s interesting to work with somebody who understands fantasy and enjoys give 150 percent in front of the camera.” Ritts shot Mick Jagger (above right) for Rolling Stone in 1987. Both photographs: Herb Ritts/Trunk Archive, courtesy Abrams

Intense images by two other Graphis alumni are shown above: At left is a 1989 portrait of bluesman B.B. King by Albert Watson, who was featured in the cover story of Graphis Issue 293. Photo-illustrator Matt Mahurin—who created the 1996 image of Marilyn Manson—enjoyed his own cover on Graphis Issue 302, which explored the then-new realm of digital illustration. Images from left: Albert Watson, Matt Mahurin, courtesy Abrams

The torch is passed to a new generation both in front of and behind the lens: Taylor Swift frolics on the beach at Amagansett, NY, in 2014, photographed by Theo Wenner—son of Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner—who has emerged as an up-and-coming photographer in his own right. Photograph: Theo Wenner, courtesy Abrams