Depeche Mode by Anton Corbijn

A new photobook chronicling the career of British electronic pop group Depeche Mode has been published this month by Taschen. ‘Depeche Mode by Anton Corbijn’ is a 512-page anthology charting the band’s ascendency between 1981 and 2018, as captured by their photographer and creative director. One of the most heralded music photographers of his generation, Corbijn is credited with transforming the band’s image from that of fledgling pop stars to one of the world’s most enduring cult bands.

Raised by a religious family in Holland, Corbijn built a reputation in the ‘80s for high-contrast, monochrome photographs of artists like Joy Division, Tom Waits, Miles Davis and The Cramps. The same bold aesthetic would come to personify Depeche Mode after their first collaboration in 1981, as the band went from penning pop hits like ‘Just Can’t Get Enough’ to reaching global renown with ‘Personal Jesus’ and ‘Enjoy The Silence’. The latter music videos were directed by Corbijn himself, and as snapshots in the book affirm, they remain among his most iconic works. 

Having also captured the cover image for U2’s ‘Joshua Tree’ in 1986, the photographer would then go on to shoot videos for Nirvana, Nick Cave and Mercury Rev in the ’90s, while also snapping David Bowie, PJ Harvey and Luciano Pavarotti. He later directed the Ian Curtis biopic ‘Control’ — which received a BAFTA nomination for Best British Film in 2008.

‘Depeche Mode by Anton Corbijn’ was published by Taschen in June 2021.