Robert Drexhage (Dutch pronunciation: Robbert Drekshagge) 30 December 1966 is a Dutch photographer and entrepreneur. He is best known for his street and travel photography, often with people or music as subjects, and he also photographed many international artist.
Robbie Drexhage was born on 30 December 1966 in Leiden, the Netherlands. Raised and grown up in the fortified city of Naarden, het Gooi, North Holland, the Netherlands.
His father Richard Drexhage (1928 – 2006) was a Correspondent and his mother (1933-2020) was a retired event organizer for several charity and social organizations.
Drexhage started his career as a photographer when he met Andrew Bowler in a train station in Algeciras, Spain waiting for the ferry to Tangiers, Morocco to depart. He had bought a cheap SLR camera in the Netherlands for this trip through Europe and Morocco. Bowler drew his attention to the possibilities of this camera, photography in general and the interest in the profession was born. Drexhage and Bowler shared many interests together, especially in regards to music. This combination grew into working in the music industry together in later years. Back in the Netherlands, the films of this trip were developed and some color photos caught people’s attention.
In 1985, Drexhage got a job as a photography assistant at Leon Klibansky Photography. Klibansky (father of the artist Joseph Klibansky) is a South African photographer, who opened his studio in Amsterdam around this time. Drexhage was able to learn the trade of advertising photography at a highly professional level. Various international advertising campaigns were made, including electronics giant Philips and insurer Nationale Nederlanden. During this time, Drexhage started studying at the photo vocational school in Apeldoorn.
Drexhage stopped this course in 1987, because he got a job at Ton Kastermans Photography in Hilversum. Drexhage became a press photographer and photographed for various news agencies and newspapers, including De Gooi- en Eemlander.
His old school friend Sebastiaan Westerweel transferred his clientele in the music industry to Drexhage. The customers were manufacturers of brands such as Sabian, Zildjian, Tama, Latin Percussion, Ibanez, Washburn, Le Blanc, Mapex, Blade and Gretch.
Robbie Drexhage has photographed artists such as Oletta Adams, Don Alias, George Benson, Terry Bossio, Lester Bowie, Greg Boyer, Michael Brecker, James Brown, Norman Brown, Larry Carlton, Eric Clapton, George Clinton, Billy Cobham, Chick Corea, Candy Dulfer, Earth Wind and Fire, Robben Ford, Laura Fygi, Richard Gere, Buddy Guy, Jim Hall, Herbie Hancock, Dave Holland, Al Jarreau, Dr. John, B.B. King, Branford Marsalis, Pat Metheny, Marcus Miller, Maceo Parker, Oscar Peterson, Simon Phillips, Courtney Pine, Dianne Reeves, Little Richard, Rosenberg Trio, Poncho Sanchez, Carlos Santana, Joe Satriani, John Scofield, Mike Stern, Sting, Van Morrison, David Weckl, Jimmie Vaughan, The Yellow Jackets and Youssou N’dour.
Drexhage’s work has been published in magazines such as The Guitarist, Music Maker, Slagwerkkrant and countless other print media.
Many national and international artists came to his studio in Hilversum and later Bussom.He photographed the Pat Metheny Group on their ‘We live here’ tour, and the Rosenberg Trio for their CD cover for the album ‘Caravan’.
Robbie Drexhage started to focus more on advertising photography and became an entrepreneur.
In the mid-1990s Drexhage started to focus more on street and travel photography. Great examples were the photographers Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson.
In 1997 Drexhage started a world tour to focus even more on street photography. With a small compact camera (to be less conspicuous) he photographed life in countries including France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Nepal, India, Laos, Thailand and Indonesia. Most of the work was done with Kodak Tri-X film.
After traveling for more than a year, Drexhage ended up on the island of Bali, where he still lives today, together with his wife and son.
As an entrepreneur, Drexhage started various projects in real estate, among other things.
In 2016, he founded The Lovina Pages, a monthly magazine about culture, charities and commercial projects in North Bali.
Robbie Drexhage was involved in setting up the Rotary Club of Bali Lovina. His non-profit construction company built the “Window to the World School Lovina”.
In 2016, Drexhage took the initiative to set up a Montessori school in Singaraja.