Lyman Allyn Art Museum Features Major Exhibition of Sports Photography by Walter Iooss

Walter Iooss Jr., photographer and longtime contributor to Sports Illustrated, has been called the “poet laureate of sports.” He has captured the thrill, triumph, and complexity of athletic achievement for over 50 years. Iooss began his career in 1961 at the age of 17, and he has produced a remarkable body of work in the decades since, documenting pivotal moments and shooting iconic athletes in introspective portraits.

The exhibition LEGENDS: the Sports Photography of Walter Iooss will open with an evening reception at the Lyman Allyn Art Museum, 625 Williams St, on Sept. 20 from 5 – 7 p.m., and will remain on view through Jan. 12, 2020. The reception is free for museum members, and non-members are $10. To RSVP, please call 860.443.2545, ext. 2129.

Including more than 60 photographs of some of Iooss’ best work from the 1960s to the present, the exhibition celebrates such greats as Willie Mays, Muhammad Ali, Wilt Chamberlin, Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Serena Williams, among many others. The photographs are recent acquisitions, gifts to the Lyman Allyn’s collection from multiple donors in 2017 and 2018.

As one of the most acclaimed sports photographers of this era, Iooss has had photos grace the cover of Sports Illustrated over 300 times, and he has contributed to the magazine’s Swimsuit Issue for 30 years. Steve Fine, Sports Illustrated director of photography, described Iooss as “an artist who is quite possibly the best sports photographer ever.” Iooss received the LUCIE Lifetime Achievement Award for Sports Photography in 2004. He has published 13 books of photography and his work has been exhibited in various museums, including the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Newseum in Washington, D.C., and the Annenberg Space for Photography in Los Angeles.

Walter Iooss, LeBron James, S.F., CA, 2009, archival pigment print. Gift of Dr. Thomas and Mrs. Julie Dwyer, 2017.12.56.

Walter Iooss, Backstroke Start, Olympic Games/Los Angeles, CA, 1984, archival pigment print. Gift of Dr. Thomas and Mrs. Julie Dwyer, 2017.12.50.

LEGENDS: the Sports Photography of Walter Iooss is supported by Atlantic Broadband; the Frank Loomis Palmer Fund, Bank of America, Trustee; and the Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts.

Tours of the exhibition are available for groups. To schedule tours, call the Education Department at 860.443.2545, ext. 2110 or e-mail
For more information or images, please contact Rebecca Dawson at 860.443.2545 ext. 2112 or at

About the Lyman Allyn Art Museum
The Lyman Allyn Art Museum welcomes visitors from New London, southeastern Connecticut and all over the world. Established in 1926 by a gift from Harriet Allyn in memory of her seafaring father, the Museum opened the doors of its beautiful neo-classical building surrounded by 12 acres of green space in 1932. Today it presents a number of changing exhibitions each year and houses a fascinating collection of over 17,000 objects from ancient times to the present; artworks from Africa, Asia, the Americas and Europe, with particularly strong collections of American paintings, decorative arts and Victorian toys and doll houses. The museum is located at 625 Williams Street, New London, Connecticut, exit 83 off I-95. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, Sundays 1:00 - 5:00 pm; closed Mondays and major holidays. For more information call 860.443.2545, ext. 2129 or visit us on Facebook or the web at: