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Article

Martha A. Sandweiss

(b Colorado Springs, CO, April 20, 1891; d Santa Fe, NM, Nov 30, 1979).

American photographer. Although she accepted commercial assignments, such as portraiture and architectural work, she was committed to chronicling the people and land of the Southwest. After studying photography in New York between 1916 and 1918 under Clarence H. White, she returned to Colorado. Through most of the 1920s she followed the romantic soft-focus tradition of her teacher and the pictorialists. In 1931 she was introduced to the Navajo community at Red Rock, AZ, by her lifelong friend Elizabeth Forster. She began to make a lasting document of the land and people that she found around her. Her style changed, her photographs becoming increasingly hard-edged, recording the culture of the Navajo and their relationship to the land in a straightforward, empathetic manner. Two decades of this work culminated in the publication of The Enduring Navaho.

Gilpin distinguished herself from many of her contemporaries by continuing to use platinum printing paper, which gave her prints a rich tonal quality, and by her devotion to landscape photography, a genre pursued by few other women. Her other publications include ...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

(b Washington, DC, Sept 12, 1953).

American photographer. Goldin began taking photographs as a teenager in Boston, MA. Her earliest works, black-and-white images of drag queens, were celebrations of the subcultural lifestyle of the community to which she belonged. She has often said of her work that it documents an extended family, a statement testified by the informality and intimacy of her pictures. During a period of study at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, she began displaying her work in the format of a slide-show, a constantly evolving project that acquired the title (appropriated from The Threepenny Opera by Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht) The Ballad of Sexual Dependency in 1981. This collection of images had a loose thematic structure and was usually shown with an accompanying sound-track, first in the clubs where many of the images were taken and then within gallery spaces. She carried on with work on The Ballad...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

[González-Torres, Félix]

(b Guaimaro, Cuba, Nov 26, 1957; d New York, Jan 9, 1996).

American sculptor and photographer of Cuban birth. He moved in 1979 to New York, where he completed a BFA in photography at the Pratt Institute (1983) and an MFA at the International Center of Photography, New York University (1987), as well as enrolling in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program. In 1987 he joined Group Material, a New York-based group of artists whose intention was to work collaboratively, adhering to principles of cultural activism and community education. His own engagement as a gay man with socio-political issues, as well as his exploration of the way in which politics can infiltrate personal life, forms the background to his work, centred around the interaction of public and private spheres. In 1989 he presented his first stacked-paper work, Untitled (Memorial Day Weekend) and Untitled (Veterans Day Sale), exhibited together as Untitled (Monuments) (L. and R. Plehn priv. col., see ...

Article

Mary Christian

(b Danville, WV, Dec 22, 1941).

American photographer. He was a student of fine arts at Richmond Professional Institute, VA, from 1961 to 1965 and at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he studied with Harry Callahan from 1965 to 1967. From the late 1960s he was also influenced by Frederick Sommer. Gowin’s deeply religious upbringing played an important role in his work. Most of his photographs from the mid-1960s until the early 1980s focus upon his wife and her family in Danville, VA, transforming them into universal symbols of ritual and family relationships. Many of these are deeply personal and almost religious in the powerful symbols they evoke; in Edith, Danville, Virginia, 1971 (see Gowin, 1976, p. 51) his wife is seen, as if clandestinely, in the privacy of a dark bedroom. His occasional use of a lens that vignettes the image into a circle also evoked ideas of a microcosm of the earth or of tourist photographs taken with an early Kodak camera....

Article

Catherine M. Grant and Margaret Rose Vendryes

(b Cleveland, OH, 1959).

American printmaker, film maker, installation and conceptual artist and writer.

Green, of African descent, has worked primarily with film-based media, and has published criticism and designed installations that reveal her commitment to ongoing feminist and black empowerment movements. She earned her BA from Wesleyan University in 1981 and also spent some time at the School of Visual Arts in New York in 1980, returning in the late 1980s to study in the Whitney Independent Study Program, graduating in 1990. At the age of 24 she began exhibiting her comparative compositions containing found objects, images, and texts that question recorded history.

Green’s work deals with issues of anthropology and travel. By undertaking projects via the methodology of the 19th-century explorer, she exposed the arbitrary and prejudiced nature of classification, as in Bequest (1991; see 1993 exh. cat.), an installation she made at the invitation of the Worcester Museum of Art to commemorate their 50th anniversary. Using the museum as a ready-made stage set, she installed works of art alongside 19th-century texts explaining stereotypes of whiteness and blackness. Green characteristically intervened in the history of her chosen site to produce a fiction that included her own responses as an African American woman to her findings. In ...

Article

Catherine M. Grant

(b Plainfield, NJ, April 24, 1943; d Montpon-Ménestérol, France, Jan 1, 2012).

American photographer and painter. She trained as a painter at the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY, graduating with a BFA in 1965. She then studied for an MA in Art Education at Ohio State University, graduating in 1970. In the early 1970s she began to take photographs, publishing a book in 1973 that included triptychs taken from a fixed point, showing vehicles travelling across the landscape, for example Emerging Rock/Measure (1973; see 1973 publication, fig.). In the same year she moved to New York, where she continued to make photographic diptychs and triptychs of urban environments, emphasizing the formal composition. In 1976–7 she made a series of over 100 triptychs of the suburban landscape of New Jersey, where she had grown up. It was in the late 1970s that Groover achieved commercial success with her still-life compositions of kitchen objects. These images focused on the elegance of the objects, abstracting their functional quality and highlighting the interplay of shapes and light, in a similar way to Robert Mapplethorpe’s studies of flowers, as in ...

Article

Richard Lorenz

American group of photographers, active 1932–5. It was a loose association of San Francisco Bay Area photographers who articulated and promoted a modern movement in photographic aesthetics. The group was formed in August 1932 by photographers who shared an interest in pure and unmanipulated photography as a means of creative expression. It derived its name from the smallest possible aperture setting on a camera, the use of which resulted in the greatest and sharpest depth of field, producing an image with foreground and background clearly focused. The original membership consisted of Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, John Paul Edwards (1883–1958), Sonya Noskowiak (1900–75), Henry Swift (1891–1960), Willard Van Dyke (1906–86), and Edward Weston. The emphasis on clarity was partly a reaction against the lingering Pictorial photography in West Coast photography, exemplified by the work of William Mortensen (1897–1965) and Anne Brigman (...

Article

Richard Lorenz

(b Breslau, Silesia [now Wrocław, Poland], May 28, 1905; d San Francisco, CA, June 12, 1998).

American photographer and painter. He studied painting at the Staatliche Akademie für Kunst und Kunstgewerbe in Breslau during the mid-1920s with Otto Mueller and from 1927 to 1930 carried out graduate and post-graduate work in Berlin at Humboldt Universität and the Akademie der Künste. Between 1929 and 1932 he taught art at various schools in Berlin and Brandenburg. He began photographing in 1933 and was hired as a photojournalist by Presse-Foto in Berlin. That same year he travelled to San Francisco, which became his permanent home in 1937.

Gutmann viewed America with a fresh and sophisticated photojournalistic style that synthesized social and aesthetic concerns in daringly cropped compositions and juxtaposed forms. His painterly sensibilities drew him to visually stimulating subjects such as graffiti, quirkily painted signs, costumed Mardi Gras revellers and car-bonnet ornaments. He devoted much of his life to teaching at San Francisco State University, where he developed the graduate photography department in ...

Article

Jason E. Hill

(b Vienna, March 2, 1921; d New York, Sept 12, 1986).

American photographer and photojournalist of Austrian birth. A pioneer in photojournalism and colour photography and a key contributor to Life, he became a member of the Magnum photo agency in 1949 and became its president in 1959. In 1962 he quit the agency to focus on fine-art photography. Best known for his highly inventive colour studies of the urban environment and the natural landscape, Haas’s photographs have ranged in subject from the ruins of post-war Europe to iconic commercial imagery for Marlboro cigarette advertisements and such Hollywood films as John Huston’s The Misfits (1960).

After Haas was prevented from completing his medical studies in his home city of Vienna on account of his Jewish ancestry in 1940, he began his study of photography at the Graphische Lehr Versuchsansalt in 1943. By 1945 he was offering photography classes with the American Red Cross, beginning a lifelong commitment to teaching. Between ...

Article

Klaus Ottmann

(b Lima, OH, June 22, 1956).

American installation artist, photographer, and video artist. Hamilton is known for creating complexly structured, highly sensual, site-specific environments that investigate visual and aural relationships with the human body. Hamilton studied textile design at the University of Kansas in Lawrence and sculpture at Yale University School of Art in New Haven. Using a wide range of metaphorical and associative materials, her installations function in the chasm between immediate experience and memory and frequently address the antinomy of creation and destruction in art.

In Privations & Excesses (1989; San Francisco, CA, Capp Street Project), Hamilton sat in a room whose floor was covered with 750,000 pennies, while obsessively wringing her hands in a hat filled with honey and, in an barred space behind her, several sheep grazed. In topos (1993; New York, Dia Center for the Arts), a figure seated in the midst of an expansive sea of interwoven horsehair, fastidiously erased printed letters from a book with a heating coil. In ...

Article

Robert Saltonstall Mattison

(b New York, March 10, 1917; d Dec 21, 1992).

American sculptor, painter, and photographer. Throughout his career he was devoted to Surrealist ideas. He had no formal training, but at schools in New York, Colorado, and California he graduated in biology and chemistry, which may have influenced his interest in primal origins and the biomorphic shapes in his sculptures and paintings. He worked briefly as a commercial photographer in New York around 1940, experimenting in 1941 with a thermographic technique invented by the Surrealists in which the negative was melted to distort the image. From 1941 to 1944 he was one of the Americans most closely associated with the European Surrealist emigrés, and he edited the Surrealist magazine VVV with assistance from Duchamp, Breton, and Ernst. He became committed to the Surrealists’ exploration of psychic automatism and to their use of mythological subjects.

Hare’s first sculptures were plaster works produced in the mid-1940s and exhibited at Peggy Guggenheim’s Art of This Century Gallery in New York in ...

Article

James Smalls

(b Bronx, New York, 1965).

African American photographer. Harris is best known for his dramatically staged self-portraits (in which he performs roles of the opposite gender or race) and photographs of his family members and friends. His works are conceptually and theoretically informed by elements of history and an awareness of the concerns of feminist, gay and lesbian, and postcolonial discourses.

Harris graduated with an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia in 1990. He studied at the Tisch School of the Arts in New York in 1991 and in the Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1992. His work has been exhibited internationally, including at both the Guggenheim Museum and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, the Kunsthalle, Basel, and the Centre d’Art Contemporain in Geneva.

In most of his photographs, Harris uses his own body as a conduit through which he poses questions and brings up issues around race, gender, and sexuality. In them, Harris assumes a variety of poses and roles—as boxer, ballerina, Billie Holiday, diva or gangster. As such, his photographs constitute investigations into the incoherencies of accepted and acceptable identities....

Article

Richard Lorenz

(b Denver, CO, Oct 29, 1931; d Albuquerque, NM, May 19, 2006).

American photographer and printmaker. His training as a painter and printmaker led him to produce eclectic photographic works that appropriate pre-existing mass-media imagery. Considering himself a ‘paraphotographer’, he seldom took his own photographs, instead selecting visual elements from pornographic magazines, advertisements and television and combining them to make ideological statements about contemporary culture. He made manifest the subliminal suggestions of advertising so as to reveal the ulterior hypocrisy and sexual provocation in the media. His finished pieces are notable for their inventive combinations of media and techniques such as photosensitized fabrics, high-contrast transparencies, acrylics, pastel, collage elements, offset lithography, transfer rubbings and Polaroid prints. He began teaching at the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1961.

Heinecken, Robert Are You Rea (Los Angeles, 1968) Mansmag (Los Angeles, 1969) Just Good Eats For U Diner (Los Angeles, 1971) He:/She: (Chicago, 1980) Recto/Verso (Portland, OR, 2006) J. Enyeart, ed.: Heinecken...

Article

Stanley G. Triggs

(b Edinburgh, July 9, 1831; d Montreal, April 4, 1913).

Canadian photographer of Scottish birth. He emigrated to Canada shortly after his marriage to Agnes Elder Robertson in October 1855. They settled in Montreal, where he worked in accountancy for several years. About 1857 he took up photography as a hobby, and in 1866 he went into it as a profession. In the early period of his business he made portraits, but his international reputation was based on his landscape photography. He received medals for work shown in London, Dublin, Paris and New York. He documented the major cities and resort areas of Quebec and Ontario and many of the villages in Quebec. He was especially fond of the wilderness and made many trips by birch bark canoe to the Blanche, the Rouge and other noted eastern rivers for the purpose of taking pictures for later sale, for example Ready for the Portage (albumen print, 1863–5; Montreal, McGill U., McCord Mus.; Notman Photographic Archvs)....

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck

(b Dortmund, June 9, 1909; d Puerto Rico, Jan 31, 1993).

American photographer of German birth. He began taking photographs at the age of 15, before studying physics. He first published a photograph, of a Dortmund blast-furnace, as early as 1929. He studied photography in 1930–31 at the Bayrische Staatslehranstalt für Lichtbildwesen, Munich. After this he stayed in Italy, where he was commissioned to photograph Renaissance works of art, and he travelled extensively in Italy for Lloyd Tours. After travelling in China and Japan he made contacts with Life magazine and emigrated to the USA, where he worked as a freelance press photographer for such magazines as Fortune, Life and Harper’s Bazaar. He consistently used a Rolleiflex camera and photographed American subjects. He gave up his studio in New York in 1958 and moved to St Croix, Virgin Islands. He continually emphasized the positive side of life in his work; in the Virgin Islands he found that original beauty whose portrayal he saw as his particular task. His archive is largely at the University of Texas, Austin....

Article

G. Lola Worthington

(b Buffalo, NY, 1950).

Tuscarora artist, writer, educator, and museum director. Hill studied at the Art Institute of Chicago (1968–70), and was awarded a Master of Arts degree from SUNY, Buffalo, NY (1980).

Intrigued with Seneca General Ely Parker (General Grant’s Military Secretary), Hill investigated Parker’s life, which took him to Washington, DC, for two years. Hill began to identify with Parker’s experience and realized he would devote himself to enlightening others about Native American arts, knowledge, education, and culture.

Hill was skilled in painting, photography, carving, beading, and basket weaving, and many of these works are located at the Canadian Museum of Civilizations, Quebec; the Woodland Indian Cultural Center, Brantford, Ontario; the Cleveland Museum of Art; the Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa, OK; the Indian Arts and Crafts Board, Washington, DC; and the Seneca Iroquois National Museum, Salamanca, NY. He taught at McMaster University, Mohawk College, Six Nations Polytechnic, and SUNY at Buffalo. Hill developed a culturally based Seneca Language curriculum and training models for teaching....

Article

Mary Panzer

[Hiller, John Arthur; Hiller Sr, Lejaren]

(b Milwaukee, WI, 1880; d New York, 1969).

American photographer and illustrator. John Arthur Hiller worked for a Milwaukee lithographer as a teenager, before studying commercial illustration at the Art Institute of Chicago. It was in Chicago that he acquired his first camera and came up with his professional name, Lejaren à Hiller. By 1909 he had moved to New York and joined the New York Society of Illustrators, where his friends included artists Charles Gibson and John Sloan, as well as editors, art directors, and advertising agents. An avid amateur actor, Lejaren à Hiller staged pageants, artists’ balls, and charity events through the 1930s. In 1921 he married Sara Anita Plummer, his favourite model and a former Ziegfeld dancer.

Lejaren à Hiller’s first photography-based illustrations for fiction appeared in 1913. Over the next decade he combined stagecraft, casting, directing, and photographic technology to create convincing narrative illusions for the printed page. By the early 1920s (when Edward Steichen was just beginning his commercial career), his clients already included Corning Glass, Winchester Arms, and General Electric. He also made cover art for ...

Article

Kate Sampsell-Willmann

(b Oshkosh, WI, Sept 26, 1874; d Hastings-on-Hudson, NY, Nov 4, 1940).

American photographer. At the age of 15 Hine began working as a sweeper in a bank to support his mother and sister. He studied at night and eventually enrolled in the Oshkosh Normal School (now University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh) intending to become a teacher. He transferred to the University of Chicago (1900–01) where he studied sociology and pedagogy with John Dewey (1859–1952). Hine followed his mentor Frank Manny (1868–1954) to New York to teach at the Ethical Culture School (1901–8). There, Manny gave Hine a camera as a pedagogical tool. Hine experimented with Pictorial photography and introduced his student Paul Strand to this style of photography on a trip to Alfred Stieglitz’s gallery 291 in 1907. In 1904 Hine recognized the significance of the immigration event unfolding at Ellis Island. Arriving as a talented amateur, Hine mastered the camera and the use of magnesium flares to depict the new immigrants, aiming to represent their human dignity and social worth. In ...

Article

Klaus Ottmann

(b New York, Sept 24, 1955).

American sculptor, installation artist, draughtsman, photographer, and writer. Horn studied at the Rhode Island School of Design and at the Yale University School of Art. From 1975 she began to travel frequently to Iceland, whose primordial, unstable landscape influenced her artistic practice.

Always intent to maintain the integrity of her chosen materials, be it solid glass, literature, or the volcanic topography of Iceland, Horn created complex relationships between the viewer and her work. She was less interested in the meaning of the work (the ‘why’ and ‘what’) and more in the interaction of action and being the ‘how’, ultimately creating art that unites both.

Her series of aluminium sculptures, which feature fragments from the writings of Franz Kafka and Emily Dickinson, such as Kafka’s Palindrome (1991–4) or Keys and Cues (1994), are reminiscent of the Minimalist sculptures of Donald Judd and Michael Fried’s famous definition of Minimalist art as ‘literal art’. However, Horn’s ‘literal’ transfer of words onto matter changes the meaning of both the original words and the materials used: taken out of context, the meaning of the original words becomes amalgamated with the meaning embedded in the material. By adding literacy to matter, the sculpture becomes nonliteral, but not devoid of content....

Article

Horst  

[Horst P ; Bohrmann, Horst Paul Albert ]

(b Weissenfels, Aug 14, 1906; d Palm Beach, FL, Nov 18, 1999).

American photographer of German birth. After briefly studying Chinese in Frankfurt am Main and then working for a firm of importers, he entered the Kunstgewerbeschule in Hamburg, where from 1926 to 1928 he designed and made furniture. Following this he went to work as an architectural assistant to Le Corbusier in Paris. There he met George Hoyningen-Huene, who worked as a photographer for Vogue, and through him Cecil Beaton. In 1931 he himself began working as a photographer for Vogue, at first producing images influenced by Hoyningen-Huene. His photographs soon achieved an individual style, however, characterized by their striking light effects and sensual use of the models. In 1932 he spent several months working for American Vogue in New York, but his employment was terminated before the end of his six-month contract. He immigrated in 1935 to the USA, again working as a photographer for American Vogue while continuing to contribute to the French edition until the late 1940s. He spent much of his time in New York and Paris, meeting celebrities such as the film director Luchino Visconti and the fashion designer Coco Chanel....