William Wegman (b. 1943)
Selected Works (excerpt) (1972)
Man Ray, Man Ray (documentary, 1978)
The World of Photography (1986) (Michael Smith and William Wegman)
William Wegman: Fay (documentary, 2009)
William Wegman was born in Holyoke, Massachusetts, in 1943. He graduated from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, in 1965 with a BFA in painting, then enrolled in the Masters painting and printmaking program at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, receiving an MFA in 1967. After teaching at various universities, Wegman’s interests in areas beyond painting ultimately led him to photography and the infant medium of video. While living in Long Beach, California, Wegman acquired Man Ray, the dog with whom he began a fruitful twelve-year collaboration. Man Ray became a central figure in Wegman’s photography and videos, known in the art world and beyond for his endearing deadpan presence. In 1972, Wegman and Man Ray moved to New York. In 1986, a new dog, Fay Ray, came into Wegman’s life, and soon thereafter another famous collaboration began, marked by Wegman’s use of the Polaroid 20 x 24 camera. With the birth of Fay’s litter in 1989 and her daughter’s litter in 1995, Wegman’s cast grew. His photographs, videos, paintings, and drawings have been exhibited in museums and galleries internationally. A retrospective of his work traveled to museums throughout Europe and the United States, including the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. His most recent exhibitions have gone to Japan, Sweden, and the Orange County Museum of Art in California. Wegman lives in New York and Maine.