Artist: Garry Winogrand
Title: Untitled, Series Women are Beautiful
Medium: Gelatin silver print, printed later
Size: 22.3 x 33.3 cm
Misc: Signed, numbered
Garry Winogrand (1928, New York City – 1984) was a street photographer known for his portrayal of America in the mid 20th century.
Winogrand studied painting at City College of New York and painting and photography at Columbia University in New York City in 1948. He also attended a photojournalism class taught by Alexey Brodovich at The New School for Social Research in New York City in 1951. Winogrand made his first notable appearance in 1963 at an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City. This show included Minor White, George Krause, Jerome Liebling and Ken Heyman.
In 1966 Winogrand exhibited at the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York with Lee Friedlander, Duane Michals, Bruce Davidson, and Danny Lyon in an exhibition entitled Toward a Social Landscape. In 1967 he participated in the New Documents show at MoMA with Diane Arbus and Lee Friedlander. During his career, he received three Guggenheim Fellowship Awards (1964, 1969, and 1979) and a National Endowment of the Arts Award in 1979. Winogrand also taught photography courses at the University of Texas at Austin and at the Art Institute of Chicago.
Winogrand was influenced by Walker Evans and Robert Frank and their respective publications American Photographs and The Americans. Henri Cartier-Bresson was another influence although stylistically different.
Winogrand was known for his portrayal of American life in the early 1960s, Many of his photographs depict the social issues of his time day and in the role of media in shaping attitudes. He roamed the streets of New York with his 35mm Leica camera rapidly taking photographs using a prefocused wide angle lens. His pictures frequently appeared as if they were driven by the energy of the events he was witnessing. While the style has been much imitated, Winogrand's eye, his visual style, and his wit, are unique.
Winogrand's photographs of the Bronx Zoo and the Coney Island Aquarium made up his first book The Animals. (1969) a collection of pictures that observe the connections between humans and animals. His book Public Relations (1977) shows press conferences with deer-in-the-headlight writers and politicians, protesters beaten by cops, and wild museum parties frequented by the self-satisfied cultural glitterati. These photographs capture the evolution of a uniquely 20th and 21st century phenomenon, the event created to be documented, in Winogrand's style -- a unique conversation between the photographer and his subject. The tilted camera, the frame filled with twitchy, restless motion and agitated faces, come together to represent an authentic and original response to the evolving culture of public relations. In Stock Photographs 1980, Winogrand published his views of the Fort Worth Fat Stock Show and Rodeo.
Winogrand died of gall bladder cancer, in 1984 at age 56. As evidence of his prolific nature, Winogrand left behind nearly 300,000 unedited images, and more than 2,500 undeveloped rolls of film. Some of these images have been exhibited posthumously and published in an exhibit catalog entitled Winogrand, Figments from the Real World, published by MoMA.