Richard Ross (photographer)

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Ross in 2014

Richard Ross is an American photographer.[1] He is best known for his body of work Juvenile in Justice, which has documented the U.S. juvenile justice system for the last 8 years. The project has been produced with the support of the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. In 2007 Ross was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship to finish Architecture of Authority.[2][3]

His latest project, Girls in Justice, focuses on girls in juvenile detention and treatment in the U.S and will be shown at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, Iowa in January 2015.

Published works[edit]

Ross's first book, Museology, a photographic examination of museums and the display of art and historical objects, was published by Aperture Foundation in 1989 and features an introduction by Marcia Tucker, founder of the New Museum and former curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art, and an essay by David Mellor, art historian and curator.[4][5]

His second book, Gathering Light explores natural and artificial light and its intrinsic relationship to photography itself through photographs of objects and places from all over the world.[6] The book featured an introduction by Dave Hickey, a prominent art and culture critic, and an essay by Eduardo Cadava, faculty in the Department of English at Princeton University.[7][8]

Ross focused on juvenile incarceration for Juvenile in Justice (2012)

Published in 2004, Ross's third book, Waiting for the End of the World is compiled of photographs of bomb and other underground shelters the world over, including an underground city in Beijing, China.[9] Michael Darling, chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, wrote about Waiting for the End of the World that "Ross's images of bomb shelters represent a crushing indictment of the current state of world affairs as well as a clarion call to action."[9] The book features an interview with Richard Ross by Sarah Vowell, a New York Times best selling author.[10]

After Waiting for the End of the World Ross published three books compiling successful U.S patent applications from the last century; Patently Ridiculous, Patently Erotic and Patently Christmas. The books were published by Plume.

In 2007, with Aperture Foundation, Ross published Architecture of Authority. The book was included in Photo District News best books of 2007 and the accompanying exhibition was number 10 on the ArtForum list of best shows of 2007.[11][12] The book features an essay by John R. MacArthur, publisher of Harper's Magazine.

Ross's first book covering the U.S. juvenile justice system, Juvenile in Justice, was published in 2012 with a foreword by Ira Glass and an essay by Bart Lubow. The nearly 150 images in the book were made over 5 years of visiting more than 1,000 youth confined in more than 200 juvenile institutions in 31 states.


Ross has exhibited his work extensively both nationally and internationally. Some of his solo exhibitions include ACME in Los Angeles (Architecture of Authority), Aperture Gallery in New York (Architecture of Authority), the National Building Museum in Washington D.C (Architecture of Authority), the Orange County Museum of Art (Gathering Light), the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (Gathering Light), and the Sonnenberg in Lucerne, Switzerland (Waiting for the End of the World).[13][14][15][16][17][18] His work has also been included in group exhibitions at the Tate Modern in London, England (Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera), the Ansel Adams Center for Photography (Beyond Boundaries), Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco, California (Teen age: You Just Don't Understand), Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York (Face Off) and The Guggenheim Gallery at Chapman University (New, Used, Borrowed).[19][20][21][22]


Since 1977 Ross has taught at the University of California, Santa Barbara.[23] He teaches photography and photojournalism.[24]


  1. ^ "Exhibition Opening at Aperture Gallery: Richard Ross". Architecture of Authority. Aperture Foundation.
  2. ^ Staff Report (April 15, 2007). "Two Guggenheim fellowships go to UCSB professors". Santa Barbara News-Press.
  3. ^ "John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation". Richard Ross, 2007, Creative Arts, Photography. Guggenheim Foundation. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  4. ^ Smith, Roberta (19 October 2006). "Marcia Tucker, 66, Founder of a Radical Art Museum, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  5. ^ Ross, Richard (1989). Museology. New York: Aperture Foundation. p. 78. ISBN 0-89381-376-1.
  6. ^ Ross, Richard (2000). Gathering Light. Southampton, England and Louisville, Kentucky: John Hansard Gallery and Speed Art Museum. ISBN 0-8263-2268-9.
  7. ^ "Department of English". Eduard Cadava, Professor. Princeton. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  8. ^ Yabroff, Jennie (13 March 2009). "Reenter the Dragon". Newsweek. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  9. ^ a b Ross, Richard (2004). Waiting for the End of the World. New York: Princeton Architectural Press. p. 144. ISBN 1-56898-466-9.
  10. ^ "New York Times Best Seller List". Best Sellers - The New York Times. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
  11. ^ Stuart Hughes, Holly (December 2007). "Photo Books of the Year". Photo District News.
  12. ^ Vanderbilt, Tom (December 2007). "Best of 2007, 10, Richard Ross. "Architecture of Authority"". ArtForum.
  13. ^ "NZZ Online". Ausstellung von Richard Ross in Luzern. NZZ. Retrieved 19 September 2006.
  14. ^ Gipe, Lawrence (3 July 2003). "Gathering Ross". The Independent.
  15. ^ Walsh, Daniella (27 January 2002). "A different light". The Orange County Register.
  16. ^ "National Building Museum". Architecture of Authority: Photographs by Richard Ross. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  17. ^ Mizota, Sharon. "Richard Ross: ACME". / CRITICS' PICKS. ArtForum. Retrieved 7 August 2007.
  18. ^ "Exposures Blog". Exhibition Opening at Aperture Gallery: Richard Ross. Aperture Foundation. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  19. ^ "The Guggenheim Gallery at Chapman University". Exhibition Detail, Group Show: New, Used, Borrowed. Curated by David Michael Lee. ARTslant. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  20. ^ Bonetti, David (January 2001). "The Modern California Photographer: Not Just a Pretty Face". San Francisco Chronicle.
  21. ^ Phillips, Sandra S. (2010). Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance, and the Camera since 1870. Yale University Press. p. 256. ISBN 978-0-300-16343-8.
  22. ^ "Ronald Feldman Gallery". Face Off. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  23. ^ Ross, Richard (2007). Architecture of Authority. New York: Aperture Foundation. p. 144. ISBN 978-1-59711-052-5.
  24. ^ "UCSB Department of Art". Richard Ross. Retrieved 16 February 2014.

External links[edit]