Howard Simmons
Stories My Camera Tells:
Once Upon a Chicago

Sanctuary Gallery

August 7, 2024 to September 28, 2024

Still photography tells its stories through captured moments in time. Stories told with power, with joy and sadness. Often, in ways that no other medium can. In its stillness, it yet moves. In its quietness it speaks a language known throughout the world. History abounds with images archived by photographers who recorded so many precious, incredible moments. We owe a debt of gratitude to the magic of each captured moment.

From a trove of thousands of images photographed between the 1970’s through the early 2000’s, Howard Simmons’ exhibit “Stories my Camera Tells: Once Upon a Chicago” features a selection of his favorite images of notable Chicago personalities and politicians, Chicago street scenes, and iconic images from photoshoots for Ebony magazine and his work in commercial photography. The exhibit includes both celebrated images that document significant moments in American history as well as never-before-seen photography, accompanied by Simmons’ personal stories and accounts about his trailblazing work as one of the first Black photographers for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Photo credit: Howard Simmons, (left) Chicago Mayor, Harold Washington; (right) Martin Luther King for Ebony Magazine, April 1970

RSVP for the opening reception on Wednesday, August 7, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the link below:

Click HERE for more information on gallery hours and private appointments.

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Howard Simmons
Stories My Camera Tells:
Once Upon a Chicago

Sanctuary Gallery

August 7, 2024 to September 28, 2024

Still photography tells its stories through captured moments in time. Stories told with power, with joy and sadness. Often, in ways that no other medium can. In its stillness, it yet moves. In its quietness it speaks a language known throughout the world. History abounds with images archived by photographers who recorded so many precious, incredible moments. We owe a debt of gratitude to the magic of each captured moment.

From a trove of thousands of images photographed between the 1970’s through the early 2000’s, Howard Simmons’ exhibit “Stories my Camera Tells: Once Upon a Chicago” features a selection of his favorite images of notable Chicago personalities and politicians, Chicago street scenes, and iconic images from photoshoots for Ebony magazine and his work in commercial photography. The exhibit includes both celebrated images that document significant moments in American history as well as never-before-seen photography, accompanied by Simmons’ personal stories and accounts about his trailblazing work as one of the first Black photographers for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Photo credit: Howard Simmons, (left) Chicago Mayor, Harold Washington; (right) Martin Luther King for Ebony Magazine, April 1970

RSVP for the opening reception on Wednesday, August 7, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the link below:

Click HERE for more information on gallery hours and private appointments.

About Howard Simmons

Howard D. Simmons is a self-taught photographer whose career is a testament to passion, perseverance, and talent. His journey began with a bold move from Pittsburgh, PA to Chicago, where he arrived without experience or an appointment but armed with a portfolio and a dream. This audacious step led him to the doors of Johnson Publishing’s Ebony Magazine, where he secured his first job that would later take him across the globe. Several years after leaving Johnson Publishing, Simmons’ career came full circle when he was brought back to take on an Ebony Fashion Fair assignment in Paris, where his work set a new standard and opened the door to other assignments with Fashion Fair for years to come.

Simmons' trajectory took a significant turn when he joined the Chicago Sun-Times as the second Black photojournalist on staff. In this role, he honed his editorial skills, capturing the vibrant and diverse stories of local Chicago life. His keen eye for detail and ability to convey compelling narratives through his photographs quickly distinguished him in the field.

Transitioning to commercial photography, Simmons expanded his portfolio to include some of the most iconic figures and major clients of his time. His work includes images of historic personalities such as Harold Washington, Oprah Winfrey, Marc Chagall, Itzhak Perlman, and Walter Payton. Additionally, he collaborated with renowned companies like Coca Cola, Proctor & Gamble, McDonald's and Sears, showcasing his versatility and expertise in both editorial and commercial photography.

Howard D. Simmons stands out as one of the few Black photographers in Chicago with extensive experience in both realms. This exhibit offers a glimpse into the breadth of his work, highlighting his unique ability to capture moments that resonate with authenticity and artistry. Through this collection, visitors will experience the rich tapestry of stories and personalities that Simmons has documented, reflecting his significant contribution to the field of photography.

About Howard Simmons

Howard D. Simmons is a self-taught photographer whose career is a testament to passion, perseverance, and talent. His journey began with a bold move from Pittsburgh, PA to Chicago, where he arrived without experience or an appointment but armed with a portfolio and a dream. This audacious step led him to the doors of Johnson Publishing’s Ebony Magazine, where he secured his first job that would later take him across the globe. Several years after leaving Johnson Publishing, Simmons’ career came full circle when he was brought back to take on an Ebony Fashion Fair assignment in Paris, where his work set a new standard and opened the door to other assignments with Fashion Fair for years to come.

Simmons' trajectory took a significant turn when he joined the Chicago Sun-Times as the second Black photojournalist on staff. In this role, he honed his editorial skills, capturing the vibrant and diverse stories of local Chicago life. His keen eye for detail and ability to convey compelling narratives through his photographs quickly distinguished him in the field.

Transitioning to commercial photography, Simmons expanded his portfolio to include some of the most iconic figures and major clients of his time. His work includes images of historic personalities such as Harold Washington, Oprah Winfrey, Marc Chagall, Itzhak Perlman, and Walter Payton. Additionally, he collaborated with renowned companies like Coca Cola, Proctor & Gamble, McDonald's and Sears, showcasing his versatility and expertise in both editorial and commercial photography.

Howard D. Simmons stands out as one of the few Black photographers in Chicago with extensive experience in both realms. This exhibit offers a glimpse into the breadth of his work, highlighting his unique ability to capture moments that resonate with authenticity and artistry. Through this collection, visitors will experience the rich tapestry of stories and personalities that Simmons has documented, reflecting his significant contribution to the field of photography.