'Self-portrait, rue Aubriot, Paris, 1972' © Alice Springs

'Self-portrait, rue Aubriot, Paris, 1972' © Alice Springs

“It was during dinner one evening just before the first publication of my photographs that Helmut asked me what name I intended to use. Jean Seberg and her Spanish boyfriend, Ricardo, were among the guests and Ricardo… asked for an atlas which I produced. He opened it to the map of Australia, asked for a pin, told me to shut my eyes and aim. The pin landed at the center of The Continent—Alice Springs. ‘There’s your name,’ he said.”

Her own photographic oeuvre began with a bout of influenza suffered by Helmut Newton in Paris in 1970. June Newton had her husband show her how to handle the camera and light meter and in his place photographed an advertisement for the French cigarette brand Gitanes. The portrait of the smoking model would be the jumpstart of a new career. In the early 1970s, Alice Springs shot several campaigns for the French hair stylist Jean Louis David; the photographs appeared under her byline as full-page ads in renowned fashion magazines. 1974 saw the first Alice Springs cover image adorning French Elle.

Alice Springs does more than document the appearance of celebrities and anonymous contemporaries; she captures their charisma, their aura. Her eye for people is mostly concentrated on people’s faces. Occasionally she narrowly frames her subjects in a half- or three-quarters’ length portrait, where the hands receive special attention as well. It might be that her deep knowledge of acting helps, how to simultaneously look at and beyond the human façade. This is particularly evident in her double portraits, in which the protagonists’ interaction is perfectly staged.

In 2012, June Newton was honoured as an Officier des Arts, Lettres et Sciences in Paris. 

Maconochie Photography is the sole worldwide representative for syndication and licensing for Alice Springs.


 'Self-portrait with Helmut at the Chateau Marmont, 1991' © Alice Springs

'Self-portrait with Helmut at the Chateau Marmont, 1991' © Alice Springs

Directed, filmed and narrated by June Newton

First broadcast: Canal+, 1995
Rerelease: HBO, 2007
First UK broadcast: BBC Four, 2014

Helmut by June

Helmut by June is filmed and directed by Newton’s frequent collaborator and wife of 56 years, June Newton. Following her husband through photo sessions with an unselfconscious eye, June turns the tables on Helmut, offering a voyeur’s window into his personal and creative life. At turns poignant, comical and unsettling, Helmut By June paints a riveting portrait of photography’s dark prince as a man who is equally comfortable on the other side of the camera. “Women sometimes ask me how I can live with such a monster,” June Newton says in her introduction to the film, “It’s easy. Watch.”

Helmut by June celebrates Newton’s lifelong affair with what he called his first love and his mistress: his photographs. June’s camera follows Newton as he painstakingly stages scenes that blend fashion and fetishism to reflect his lifelong fascination with women who are simultaneously powerful and vulnerable. Always in complete control of his subjects, Newton describes the models in his photographs as “a commodity … paid to be made into what I want.”

Against the ultrachic backdrops of Monte Carlo, Paris, Miami, Nice and Los Angeles, a who’s who of the fashion world including Cindy Crawford, Claudia Schiffer, Helena Christiansen, Carla Bruni, and Gianni and Donatella Versace parades before Newton’s skewed lens. Hollywood royalty, including Billy Wilder and Sigourney Weaver (in an iridescent green body suit, and shaved head), and opera stars Jane Anderson and Luciano Pavarotti also allow themselves to be transformed into figments of Newton’s perverse imagination. His dissolute charm seduces even politicians: Newton chortles about his “ultimate pin up girl,” Margaret Thatcher.

“People want to get inside his head to see where the images come from,” June observes at the film’s outset. Documenting the personal side of a very public partnership, Helmut By June makes viewers feel almost complicit in Newton’s extraordinary artistic agenda. Undeniably original yet unnervingly cozy, the private world of Helmut and June Newton may be their most memorable creation. 


Two Alice Springs shows are exhibited each year at the Helmut Newton Foundation in Berlin. 

The Foundation was opened in 2004, shortly after Helmut's death in Los Angeles. It was established with the Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz (the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation), a government agency responsible for state-run museums in what was formerly Prussia, and acknowledging Helmut Newton's German roots.

Please see the News section for current Alice Springs exhibitions.

List of exhibitions

2015 — Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris

2012 — 
Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris
Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milan

2011 — Kestner Gesellschaft, Hanover

2010 — 'Retrospective' Helmut Newton Foundation, Berlin

2007 — 'Snapshots Ramatuelle' Helmut Newton Foundation, Berlin

2005 — 'June's Darkroom' Helmut Newton Foundation, Berlin

1997 — Victorian Arts Centre, Melbourne

1993 — 
Arrêt sur l'Image Galerie, Bordeaux
Galerie am Alten Rathaus am Markt, Wittlich
Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst, Leipzig
Foto Forum, Bremen

1992 —
Shoshana Wayne Gallery, Los Angeles
Gaby Fenne Galerie, Bonn

1991 — Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn

1990 — Museo Contemporáneo, Mexico City

1988 —
Galerie Fiolet, Amsterdam
Olympus Galerie, Hamburg
National Portrait Gallery, London
Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris

1987 — Fotoforum, Frankfurt

1986 —
Centre Culturel et Artistique, Aubusson
Espace Photographique de la Ville de Paris

1985 — 
Centre Cultural, Orléans
Musée Sainte-Croix, Poitiers
Documenta Gallery, Turin

1984 — 
Musée Cheret. Nice

1983 —
Olympus Gallery, London
Galerie de France, Paris

1982 — 
David Heath Gallery, Atlanta, Georgia
The Yuen Lui Gallery, Seattle, Washington

1980 —
Canon Gallery, Geneva
Duc et Camroux, Paris

1978 — Canon Gallery, Amsterdam