Michael Stipe

Robert & Russell meet music icon Michael Stipe, best known as lead singer of R.E.M. We discuss his lifelong love of taking photographs (more than 37,000 so far), his childhood Nikon camera (a gift from his father), self-portraits, making sculptures, his friendship with Patti Smith, meeting members of the Beat Generation such as Allen Ginsberg & William Burroughs and why he dislikes his own handwriting. We explore his recent collaboration with Sam Taylor-Johnson on the video for his new solo single ‘Your Capricious Soul’ (which is also raising funds for charity Extinction Rebellion), his admiration for artist/poet John Giorno, British poet Edith Sitwell, photographers Robert Mapplethorpe and Wolfgang Tillmans, sculptors Bernini and Brancusi, meeting Andy Warhol (and buying one of Warhol’s Polaroid cameras), a moving story related to the play Angels in America, why German artist Hans Haacke is one of his greatest heroes and the last impact of his early Athens relationship with artist Jeremy Ayres.


Michael’s new book of photography ‘Our Interference Times: A Visual Record’ is available now. We also recommend his earlier book ‘Volume 1’ (both published by Damiani, 2019 & 2018). His first solo single ‘Your Capricious Soul’ can be downloaded as a bundle with video and artwork exclusively from MichaelStipe.com and you can follow his former band (and the 25th anniversary of their album Monster) on Instagram @rem


 

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