Nationally-recognized photographer Anthony Barboza grew up in New Bedford, but said his world opened up when he arrived in New York in 1963 at 19 years old and began cultivating a love of the arts and photography that is still with him today, 60 years later.

Barboza will return to his hometown on May 6 for a book signing at the New Bedford Art Museum. He joined Townsquare Sunday this week, discussing his career and his book of photographs entitled Eye Dreaming.

"Shortly after arriving in New York, while attending night school, I was invited to join a Black photographers group called Kamoinge, meaning working together," he said. "I was fascinated by how the brothers talked about the images they put on the screen. I found this was much more interesting than the classes I took in night school."

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After a stint in the U.S. Navy where he continued to take photos, Barboza returned to New York and opened a small studio, taking photographs of the world around him.

Barboza said that over the past 60 years, he has taken more than seven million photographs.

He has worked with newsmakers and celebrities, taking photos for magazine covers and advertisements along with his own projects.

His subjects include musicians Issac Hayes, Bill Withers, Grace Jones, Miles Davis, Cher, and Aretha Franklin, and many other celebrities. He also did photo shoots with many boxers, including "Marvelous" Marvin Hagler, and political figures as well.

Contributed Photo
Contributed Photo

He said what makes a good photo is "when the feeling I have for the subject comes across in the eyes of the person you are working with."

"It's not only the composition, it's when they feel they can open up because you make them feel comfortable," he said.

Barboza returns to New Bedford on Saturday, May 6 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. for a book signing program at the New Bedford Art Museum. The program is free and open to the public.

His book Eye Dreaming is a compilation of some of his most compelling photographs.

"I did photography because I loved doing it. I thought it was magical. It was never about being famous," he said.

Townsquare Sunday is a weekly public affairs program heard Sundays at 6 a.m. and 11 a.m. on WBSM.

The program highlights individuals and organizations seeking to make Greater New Bedford a better place to live and work.

If you would like your organization featured on Townsquare Sunday, please email the host at

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