Front Row Center: Icons of Rock, Blues and Soul

April 6, 2021 - June 27, 2021
Tom Petty and Bob Dylan playing instruments and sharing microphone at the Greek Theater

About The Art

An all-access pass to some of the most memorable performances of Rock, Blues and Soul ever captured on film. 

The iconic photographs of Larry Hulst capture the freewheeling energy of live music and the enduring visual spectacle of rock’s greatest performers. From Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix to David Bowie and Lauryn Hill, Front Row Center: Icons of Rock, Blues and Soul brings together over 70 images of legendary musicians and singers across three genres and generations. The exhibition charts Hulst’s extraordinary path through the pulsing heart of the most exciting live music of the last century, showcasing a unique visual anthology of rock, blues, and soul music from 1970–1999. These images, which have been featured on album art and Rolling Stone spreads, convey Hulst’s lifelong passion for the magnetism, immediacy, and unpredictability of live music. With photos that also document the unforgettable voices of funk, punk, and beyond, Front Row Center grants viewers an all-access pass to some of the most memorable performances in popular music history.

Born in 1946 in San Diego, Larry Hulst is a longtime participant and chronicler of the concert scene. His collection of nearly three thousand black-and-white negatives has helped immortalize the live acts of influential musicians over five momentous decades of rock history. His photography career began in 1969, when the former Navy corpsman returned home to Sacramento after a tour of duty in Vietnam. Citing Jim Marshall, Ansel Adams, and Lynn Goldsmith among his influences,

Hulst is fueled both by his respect for his musical heroes and by his dedication to perfecting his photographic eye. The hallmark of Hulst’s work is his authentic ability to evoke the raw energy and emotion of the concert experience. The only prop he has ever needed was the stage. “I never wanted to go backstage,” Hulst states. “I want to be where the action is. After all, the ‘show’ is projected out onto the audience. I want to be in the audience.”

Photographic prints are available for purchase in The Butler Museum Store located on the first floor, in the Andrews Pavilion section of the museum at the back of Beecher Court, near the rear entrance of the museum. A limited number of larry’s book “From the Vaults” are available for purchase in the Museum Store as well. To contact The Butler Museum Store, phone 234-228-8502.

Black and white book cover with David Bowie on stage singing at a microphone stand with stage lights shining in the background and to the right a colage of smaller images of various rock starts performing

Book cover image


Front Row Center: Icons of Rock, Blues, and Soul is organized and toured by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC.

This  exhibition is funded in part by 

CATEGORIES: Exhibition

DATE: April 6, 2021 - June 27, 2021

LOCATION: MacIntosh/Finnegan-Hynes Galleries, 2nd Floor


Selected Works


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