Christopher Makos (Lowell [Massachusetts], 1948) spent his childhood and teens in California, before moving to Paris to study architecture. He later worked as an apprentice to Man Ray. From the beginning of the seventies, he has worked on developing a daringly graphic style of press photography. His portraits of anonymous night club habitués and members of pre-punk, glamrock and punk movements showed the audaciously graphic journalism of his early years, capturing the essence of that period in a crude, prosaic style. His photographs have been shown in many exhibitions at galleries and museums in the USA, Europe and Japan, and have appeared in many magazines and newspapers all over the world.
A key figure in the New York contemporary art scene, he was a friend of Jean-Michel Basquiat's, Keith Haring's and Andy Warhol's, with whom he collaborated in the printing of his black and white photographs, art directed his first book of photographs, Exposures, and was jointly responsible for the idea of machine-sewing photographs together at the first exhibition of Warhol's photographs held at the Robert Miller Gallery. In his work for Interview he brought out his 'makollages', strips of photographs edited with several overlapping images, and created daring lifesize photographs. There has been a great transformation in his style, because, although there is still a large documentary component in it, it is presented in large formats contrasting apparently opposing images that nevertheless emphasize the author's idea, the creation of a closed sequence in which to tell his stories.
Makos is the author of four books. The first one, White Trash (Stonehill Publishing Company, New York, 1977) documents the pre-punk atmosphere of New York City night clubs. His most recent book, Warhol: A Personal Photographic Memory (New American Library, New York, 1989) contains 150 black and white photographs that are a chronicle of his close friendship with Andy Warhol and the long journeys he made with him, from Beijing and Barcelona to Aspen and Dusseldorf; Makos' photographs capture Andy Warhol's world and his personal view of fashion, travelling, shopping, photography and art.. In his more recent books, Makos Men: Sewn Photos (Pohlmann Press, Los Angeles [California], 1996) and Makos (St Martin's Press, New York, 1997), he concentrate on the homoerotic motifs that make up an important part of the photographer's work, in a style that has become more refined, sensual and elegant.
Makos' photographs have been published in magazines like Interview, Rolling Stone, House and Garden, Connoisseur, New York Magazine, Esquire and People, and in recent years he has also delved into the world of painting and silkscreen prints like his portfolio on Man Ray, which is a tribute to his first mentor, and the portfolio Makos' Icons, which is a collection of silkscreen portraits of Andy Warhol, Elizabeth Taylor, Salvador Dalí, John Lennon and Mick Jagger. In 1993 he started a weekly half-hour programme called Makostyle on a commercial TV cable channel.
His first visit to Spain took place in 1983, and was followed by several trips to our country thanks to the lure exerted on him by the boom of Spanish culture and Madrid night life. An American view of Spanish culture that follows the very same trajectory as his earlier works, and has materialized in this view of Barcelona, Bilbao, Ibiza, Madrid, Mallorca, Salamanca, Seville, Toledo and Valencia, and includes anonymous people alongside celebrities of social and cultural circles such as Miguel Bosé, Paola Dominguín, Alaska, Ágatha Ruiz de la Prada, Tony Miró, Laura Ponte, Nacho Duato, Najwa Nimri, etc. He depicts architectural details, picturesque spots and natural landscapes and the places visited during his trips to Spain between 1983 and the present day. The selection contains a sequence of 90 photographs, in which he expresses his own personal view of the evolution and development undergone by Spanish society in the last few decades and has been specially designed for the Sala de la Muralla by Christopher Makos himself.