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Edward Weston
Illinois, 1886 – California, 1958
Bio
Exhibitions

Edward Weston began taking photographs at the age of 16. In 1911 he opened his first photography studio in the town of Tropico, California, which was to be the base for his work over the following 20 years, acquiring ever wider acknowledgement and winning a great number of prizes.

In 1922, while travelling in Ohio, he shot a series of photos that was to change his career: he abandoned the pictorial style which had typified his work until that point and began to experiment with a clearer and better defined kind of photography, focusing on the abstract forms of both industrial objects and organic elements. “The camera,” Weston stated, “should be used for a recording of life, for rendering the very substance and quintessence of the thing itself, whether it be polished steel or palpitating flesh.” That same year he also travelled to New York, where he came into contact with photographers such as Alfred Stieglitz and Paul Strand.

In 1923 he moved to Mexico City, where he opened a new studio together with his assistant and lover Tina Modotti, joining the Mexican artistic scene, alongside Diego Rivera, David Siqueiros and José Orozco. His time in Mexico marked a period of transition and self-analysis, both on the stylistic and the conceptual levels, with the photographer’s interest shifting onto the intrinsic mechanisms of the photographic apparatus: “If I cannot obtain a technically perfect negative, the emotional or intellectual value of the photo is practically non-existent.”

On returning to California, in 1929 he moved to Carmel, where in 1932 (along with Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham and other photographers) he founded the famous Group f/64, a collective with which he was to implement a form of poetics based on the clarity of the image and on the experimentation with all the aesthetic potential to be offered by the photographic medium.

Year after year, Weston’s work acquired ever more importance in the American arts scene, and in 1936 he became the first photographer to receive the Guggenheim Fellowship. In 1946 the MoMA New York staged a major retrospective of his work, with a display of over 300 works which was to consecrate him once and for all as one of the great artists of the 20th century.

In 1948 Weston took his last shot in Point Lobos: over the previous years he had in fact begun to suffer from the onset of Parkinson’s. Over the following years of illness, he dedicated his time to reviewing and selecting his photographs, personally overseeing the new prints carried out by his sons Brett and Cole.

Lands of Men

Palazzo Gromo Losa, Biella

27 ottobre 2017 - 7 gennaio 2018

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10 years old

2007-2017: a history of the world told through the images of the Fondazione Cassa di risparmio di Modena Collection

March 11 - April 30, 2017

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Flags of America

CIAC, Foligno

19 marzo - 10 luglio 2016

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Flags of America

The major American authors of 1940s/1970s

15th December | 7th April 2013

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Edward Weston. Una retrospettiva

CIAC, Foligno

15th December | 17th February 2013

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Edward Weston

A retrospective

14th September | 9th December 2012

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Edward Weston
Pepper, 30P, 1930
silver gelatin print
23,5 x 19 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Point Lobos, n.d.
silver gelatin print
19 x 24,5 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Nude, 1936
silver gelatin print
24 x 19,5 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Egg, 1931
silver gelatin print
23,5 x 19 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Toadstool, 4FU, 1931
silver gelatin print
19 x 23,5 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Cabbage Leaf, 39V, 1934
silver gelatin print
19 x 23,5 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents

Edward Weston
Shell, 1S, 1927
silver gelatin print
23,5 x 18,5 cm
© 1981 Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Board of Regents