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Carleton Watkins

Carleton Watkins’ position as a preeminent photographer of the American West is undisputed. He is considered by many to be the greatest American photographer of the nineteenth century. During his career of some fifty years, Watkins traveled the western US, making thousands of remarkable, historically important images. From breathtaking pictures of Yosemite, the Pacific Coast, and the scenery along the Columbia River, to the vast Sierra Nevada, these images provide an unparalleled visual record of the West. Watkin’s artistic vision was both refined and evocative. It is in large part due to the persuasive power of Watkin’s mammoth plate images of Yosemite that the area was set aside as a National Park.

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Robert Weingarten

Born in New York City in 1941, Robert Weingarten moved to Los Angeles in the early 1980s. His photographs have been exhibited widely, and are included in numerous collections, including the George Eastman House, J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., Polin Museum of Art, Warsaw, Poland and Whitney Museum of American Art. He has received numerous awards in photography as well as held many solo and group exhibitions worldwide. He has produced a number of books and has appeared in multiple publications. Robert Weingarten currently lives in Malibu, California.

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Jack Welpott

Internationally known photographer and educator, Jack Welpott was born in Kansas City, Kansas on April 27, 1923, but grew up in Bloomington, Indiana. After high school he enrolled in Indiana University, but was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Force in 1943. He served in the South Pacific as a radio intercept operator until 1946. After WW II, he returned to Indiana University on the G.I. Bill where he earned an M.F.A degree studying with Henry Holmes Smith. Jack and Jerry Uelsmann were the first M.F.A. graduates while Van Deren Coke was also a graduate student. During these years, he became acquainted with Harry Callahan, Aaron Siskind, and Minor White all of whom were established photographers and pioneers in American photographic education.

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Cara Weston

Cara Weston was born and raised in Carmel, California, the daughter of photographer Cole Weston and Helen Prosser Weston and granddaughter to the world-renowned photographer Edward Weston and Flora Chandler Weston. Living in the photographic world all her life, in the 1970s, she worked for and with her father Cole Weston, and with her uncle, Brett Weston as an assistant and model. She also spent a short time assisting black and white photographer Rod Dresser. Cara initially photographed using only black and white film, she has broken with family tradition and has embraced digital photography. She also worked in the medium of stained glass for many years. Cara inherited another Weston family passion, sailing, which she did extensively, making trips to Hawaii, Costa Rica, the Channel Islands and Baja, Mexico. Cara's most personal and rewarding years have been raising her two daughters and being a mother. She strongly feels this is her greatest accomplishment in life and can't imagine anything else ever being as rewarding. Cara currently lives in Big Sur, California.

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Cole Weston

Cole Weston first began working in color in 1947, when Eastman Kodak sent a quantity of their new film, Kodachrome, to his father, Edward Weston. He gave up black-and-white photography in his own personal endeavors almost immediately, and soon became one of photography’s finest colorists. His images are known for their unusual beauty, emotional impact, and exuberant use of color. Having simultaneously done his own creative work while printing from his father’s negatives, according to Edward’s wishes, for over thirty years, Cole turned his energies predominantly toward making his own photography in 1988, working across the American West, in Europe, and with the female nude. His work has been featured in more than sixty exhibitions worldwide and is in the collections of museums throughout the US and Europe.

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Edward Weston

Edward Weston, an American photographer was born in Highland Park, Illinois. Weston began to make photographs in Chicago parks in 1902, and his works were first exhibited in 1903 at the Art Institute of Chicago. Three years later he moved to California and opened a portrait studio in a Los Angeles suburb. The Western landscape soon became his principal subject matter. In the 1930s, Weston and several other photographers, including Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, and Willard van Dyke, formed the f/64 group, which greatly influenced the aesthetics of American photography. In 1937, Weston received the first Guggenheim Fellowship awarded to a photographer, which freed him from earning a living as a portraitist. The works for which he is famous–sharp, stark, brilliantly printed images of sand dunes, nudes, vegetables, rock formations, trees, cacti, shells, water, and human faces are among the finest of 20th-century photographs; their influence on modern art remains inestimable.

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Margaret Bourke White

Margaret Bourke-White was born in New York City and attended the Clarence H. White School of Photography in 1921-22. After graduating from college in 1927, she pursued a career in photography and opened a photography studio in Cleveland. The industrial photography she did there brought her work to the attention of Henry Luce, the publisher of Fortune, who hired her in 1929, and the next year sent her to the Soviet Union, where she was the first foreign photographer to make pictures of Soviet industry. She photographed the Dust Bowl for Fortune in 1934; this project led to the publication of You Have Seen Their Faces (1937), which documented the human aspects of the Depression and featured text by Erskine Caldwell. In the fall of 1936, Henry Luce again offered Bourke-White a job, this time as a staff photographer for his newly conceived Life magazine. Bourke-White was one of the first four photographers hired, and her photograph Fort Peck Dam was reproduced on the first cover.Over the next several years and throughout World War II, Bourke-White produced a number of photo essays on the turmoil in Europe. She was the only Western photographer to witness the German invasion of Moscow in 1941, she was the first woman to accompany Air Corps crews on bombing missions in 1942, and she traveled with Patton's army through Germany in 1945 as it liberated several concentration camps. During the next twelve years, she photographed major international events and stories, including Gandhi's fight for Indian independence, the unrest in South Africa, and the Korean War. Bourke-White contracted Parkinson's disease in 1953 and made her last photo essay for Life, "Megalopolis," in 1957.

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Minor White

Minor White was an American photographer, theoretician, critic and educator. He combined an intense interest in how people viewed and understood photographs with a personal vision that was guided by a variety of spiritual and intellectual philosophies. Starting in Oregon in 1937 and continuing until he died in 1976, White made thousands of black-and-white and color photographs of landscapes, people and abstract subject matter, created with both technical mastery and a strong visual sense of light and shadow. He taught many classes, workshops and retreats on photography at the California School of Fine Arts, Rochester Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, other schools, and in his own home. He lived much of his life as a closeted gay man, afraid to express himself publicly for fear of loss of his teaching jobs, and some of his most compelling images are figure studies of men whom he taught or with whom he had relationships. He helped start and for many years was editor of the photography magazine Aperture. After his death in 1976, White was hailed as one of America's greatest photographers.

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Marion Post Wolcott

Marion Post Wolcott was born in Montclair, New Jersey, and educated at the New School for Social Research, New York University, and at the University of Vienna. Upon graduation in 1932, she returned to New York to pursue a career in photography and attended workshops with Ralph Steiner. By 1936, she was a freelance photographer for Life, Fortune, and other magazines. She became a staff photographer for the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin in 1937 and remained there until Paul Strand recommended her to Roy Stryker at the Farm Security Administration, where she worked from 1938 to 1942. Wolcott suspended her photographic career thereafter in order to raise her family, but continued to photograph periodically as she traveled and taught, in Iran, Pakistan, Egypt, and New Mexico. In 1968 she returned to freelance photography in California and concentrated on color work, which she had been producing in the early 1940s. Wolcott's photographs have been included in group and solo exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in 1962, ICP, and elsewhere. Among other honors she has received are the Dorothea Lange Award, and the 1991 Society of Photographic Education's Lifetime Achievement Award. The several books on her life and career include Paul Henrickson's Looking for the Light: The Hidden Life of Marion Post Wolcott (1992).

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