FotoFocus Announces William Wegman Lecture at the Cincinnati Art Museum
FotoFocus, the nonprofit arts organization that champions photography and lens-based art, is pleased to announce that internationally acclaimed visual artist William Wegman will take part in the organization's Lecture and Visiting Artist Series. Wegman will present a lecture at the Cincinnati Art Museum on Wednesday, April 17, 2019, at 7PM. The visit comes nearly 40 years after Wegman's celebrated exhibition at Cincinnati's Contemporary Arts Center, Wegman's World, in 1982.
Almost fifty years into his career, Wegman proves to be a living icon. He has worked with various media throughout his lifetime but continues to draw profound, global attention for his photographic portraits of Weimaraner dogs. Together, he and his dogs have been featured everywhere from The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Smithsonian American Art Museum to Saturday Night Live, Sesame Street, and Vogue. With a wry humor and a balanced control of the camera and his canines, Wegman's photographs prompt viewers to consider transformations and the human connection to the animal world.
"We are honored and privileged to bring William Wegman back to Cincinnati," says Mary Ellen Goeke, FotoFocus Executive Director. "Everyone who had the opportunity to meet him here in 1982 has fond memories, and I hope this lecture will pass his spirit, energy, and invaluable years of experience on to our city's younger generation of artists."
In 2018, Wegman gifted his entire 174-piece video oeuvre to The Metropolitan Museum of Artin New York, resulting in the opening of the exhibition Before/On/After: William Wegman and California Conceptualism. In the same year, MTA Arts & Design commissioned Wegman to enliven New York City's 23rd Street with a series of eleven glass mosaic panels, each modeled after a different Weimaraner portrait. In 2017, Wegman launched his latest publication, Being Human (Chronicle/Thames and Hudson), featuring 300 previously unseen polaroids accompanied by texts by Wegman and William A. Ewing. An exhibition of the same name is traveling worldwide and is currently on view at the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (December 7, 2018 - March 17, 2019). Its next stop will be Christchurch Art Gallery, New Zealand (April 8 - August 4, 2019).
The lecture is free and open to the public and will take place at 7 PM at the Cincinnati Art Museum. The lecture will be followed by a Q&A and book signing with the artist. Wegman's books will be available to purchase. For more information, please visit fotofocuscincinnati.org.
FotoFocus brings photography and lens-based art programming to its hometown of Cincinnati year-round. In 1996, FotoFocus founders launched the Lecture and Visiting Artist Series. Every lecture is free and open to the public with a special emphasis on student engagement. Previous speakers in the series have included Zoe Leonard, Doug Aitken, Jo Ann Callis, Gregory Crewdson, Thomas Demand, Philip-Lorca diCorcia, Roe Ethridge, Larry Fink, Michael Kenna, Laurie Simmons, David Benjamin Sherry, Paul Graham, Barbara Kasten, Todd Hido, Tina Barney, Alec Soth, John Waters, Doug + Mike Starn, and Joyce Tenneson.
ABOUT William Wegman
Born in Holyoke, Massachusetts, in 1943, William Wegman received a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston and an MFA from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His work has been exhibited extensively in both the United States and abroad, including solo exhibitions at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (1982); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1988); Whitney Museum of American Art (1992); Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2001); and The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2002).
The retrospective William Wegman: Funney/Strange was held at the Brooklyn Museum, and traveled to the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; the Norton Museum of Art, Palm Beach; the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover; and Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus (2006-07). The Bowdoin College Museum of Art presented William Wegman: Hello Nature, a major survey of over 100 nature-related works by the artist in various media (2012), which traveled to Artipelag, Värmdö, Stockholm, Sweden (2013). William Wegman: Improved Photographs, a survey exhibition, was held at the Jepson Center, Telfair Museums, Savannah, GA (2017). Currently, Being Human, an exhibition of his large-format polaroids is traveling worldwide: Les Rencontres de la Photographie, Palais de L'Archevêché, France (July 2 - September 23, 2018); National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (December 7, 2018 - March 17, 2019); Christchurch Art Gallery, New Zealand (April 8 - August 4, 2019); Museo d'arte della Svizzera Italiana (MASI), Lugano (September 2019); Fotomuseum den Haag, The Hague (Fall 2020).
Wegman's work is in many important public collections including Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Wegman has created film and video works for Saturday Night Live and Nickelodeon and his video segments for Sesame Street have appeared regularly since 1989. He has created covers for numerous publications including The New Yorker, Wallpaper and, most recently, Vogue. Wegman has also appeared on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and with Jay Leno, The David Letterman Show and The Colbert Report.
William Wegman lives in New York and Maine where he continues to paint, draw, make videos and take photographs with his dogs Flo and Topper.
Photo: William Wegman and Bobbin by Tim Mantoani