James Barnor – 'Photography is in every branch of life'



British-Ghanaian photographer James Barnor’s career spans six decades, two continents and numerous photographic genres through his work with studio portraiture, photojournalism, editorial commissions and wider social commentary.

Born in 1929 in Ghana, James Barnor established his famous Ever Young studio in Accra in the early 1950s, capturing a nation on the cusp of independence in an ambiance animated by conversation and highlife music. In 1959 he arrived in London, furthering his studies and continuing assignments for influential South African magazine Drum which reflected the spirit of the era and the experiences of London’s burgeoning African diaspora. He returned to Ghana in the early 1970s to establish the country’s first colour processing lab while continuing his work as a portrait photographer and embedding himself in the music scene. He returned to London in 1994.

Watch Barnor reflect on his life, work and legacy in his exhibition at the Serpentine.

Photographer/Director – Campbell Addy at CLM
Photo Assistant – Meshach Roberts
DOP – Mark Adcock
1st AC – Angela Garcia
Sound Recordist – Nikos Nikolalaios
Groomer – Mata Marielle at CLM
Set Designer – Ibby Njoya at New School Represents
Set Assistants – Axel Drury and Sam Edyn
Edit – Thomas Goldser and Pawel Achtelik at Avenues Studio
Grade – Sharon Cho Ki Chung at Avenues Studio
Music – cktrl

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