The first time Madonna introduced herself to Richard Corman, she served him bubble gum and an espresso on a silver tray. It was 1983 and they were meeting in her East Village apartment for a photo shoot. “There was nothing pretentious about it,” Corman said. “It was funny but it was her. It might have been planned but it was charming and it set the tone. From there on, everything was unexpected.” For the next several hours, they walked the streets of New York City as Madonna turned nursing homes, rooftops and building rubble into her own photo studio. Madge had yet to make her big break but even then it was clear to everyone that she was a star in the making, and crowds of neighborhood children would follow her wherever she went. More than 50 images from that day and others will be exhibited at an opening tonight at Milk Gallery in New York City. The exhibit coincides the release of Corman’s book, Madonna NYC83. “It was a time in the city where the energy was just crazy wonderful. It was this carnival of creativity going on, especially downtown, and you just felt it. At that time, I was leaving Avedon’s studio and going out on my own and I was photographing the Keith Harings and the Basquiats and the Madonnas and the punk scene. It was original, it was unique and it was on fire.” Madonna NYC83 runs through December 15. (Images; Richard Corman)

Madonna by Richard Corman, 1983