Self portrait

Jules Bates (1955-1982) was a Los Angeles-based photographer and photo editor for L.A. Weekly. In 1978 he co-founded the art collective Artrouble with David Allen and Phyllis Cohen to create artwork and album covers for local punk, new wave bands, and models. He attended ArtCenter from 1976-1979 and received a posthumous honorary doctorate in 2008. Tragically, Bates died in a motorcycle hit and run in 1982. The LA Weekly clipping below provides more detail.

Bates had a short but prolific professional career from 1978-1982, and in that period captured the punk and new wave scenes, styles, and artists in Los Angeles. He regularly photographed bands backstage at clubs like the Masque and Whisky a Go Go, and photographed album covers for bands like the Dickies, DEVO, X, Motels, and Kool and the Gang. In 1983 he was posthumously nominated for a Grammy award for Best Album Package for Oingo Boingo’s 1982 album Nothing to Fear. 

Much of Bates’ work consists of fashion photography, which shows a New Wave aesthetic and features elaborate backgrounds, unique setups, careful lighting, and intricate makeup by Phyllis Cohen. Bates also regularly did portrait photography of celebrities such as David Lynch, Pee-wee Herman, Quentin Crisp, and Sam Fuller, some of which were in L.A. Weekly.  

This online exhibit features selections of his work from the Jules Bates photographs collection at ArtCenter College of Design, Archives and Special Collections.

LA Weekly clipping from October 1982
Four LA Weekly Covers showcasing Jules Bates' work.
Covers of LA Weekly featuring Jules Bates' work.
Artrouble Silkscreen
Artrouble silkscreen. Photography by Jules Bates, makeup by Phyllis Cohen, design by David Allen.
These flyers below were used by the Artrouble collective as promotional material. The first two feature work by Phyllis Cohen, and the others are images by Jules Bates, some of which are featured later in the exhibit.

Photography © Jules Bates.