These amazing photographs of Muhammad Ali were taken by photog David King at Ali’s training camp in Pennsylvania during 1974. Ali was preparing for his historic heavyweight title bout against George Foreman, held in Zaire. The photographs show Ali’s 16-week training programme for the fight and are of considerable historical importance.
David King started shooting when he was Art Editor of the Sunday Times Colour Magazine (1965-75). His photographic biography of Ali was published by Penguin in 1975 and sold 175,000 copies. Here’s an extract from the book:
“I told you all that I was the greatest of all time…I kept tellin’ him that he has no punch, couldn’t hit, swings like a sissy! He’s missin’! Let me see yer box!…I didn’t dance from the second round on, I stayed on the ropes…I told him he has no power…I was blockin’ and I was pullin’ back. I have this radar built inside me to avoid George’s punches! I told you I’m gonna float like a butterfly and sting like a bee, his hands can’t hit what his eyes can’t see. So that’s what happened!”
“Muhammad Ali: An Exhibition of Photographs by David King” opens March 19 at Lucy Bell Fine Art, St. Leonards, East Sussex.