Alfred Stieglitz Taking Pictures, Making Painters Phyllis Rose

Series:
Jewish Lives
Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
28 May 2019
ISBN:
9780300226485
Imprint:
Yale University Press
Dimensions:
272 pages: 210 x 146mm
Illustrations:
14 color + 89 b-w illus.

A fascinating biography of a revolutionary American artist ripe for rediscovery as a photographer and champion of other artists

Alfred Stieglitz (1864–1946) was an enormously influential artist and nurturer of artists even though his career is often overshadowed by his role as Georgia O’Keeffe’s husband. This new book from celebrated biographer Phyllis Rose reconsiders Stieglitz as a revolutionary force in the history of American art.

Born in New Jersey, Stieglitz later studied in Germany, where his father, a wool merchant and painter, insisted he would get a proper education. After returning to America, he became one of the first American photographers to achieve international fame. By the time he was sixty, he gave up photography and devoted himself to selling and promoting art. His first gallery, 291, was the first American gallery to show works by Picasso, Rodin, Matisse, and other great European modernists. His galleries were not dealerships so much as open universities, where he introduced European modern art to Americans and nurtured an appreciation of American art among American artists.

Phyllis Rose is a literary critic and biographer. Her books include the acclaimed biography of Virginia Woolf, Woman of Letters, and her classic Parallel Lives: Five Victorian Marriages. She divides her time between New York City and Key West, FL.

“Rose is consistently generous, knowledgeable . . .”—Christine Smallwood, New Yorker


“There is no pure white or black in photography: a great photograph captures the nuances of light and shadow that underlie perception. That is exactly what Phyllis Rose's biography of Alfred Stieglitz does. And no biographer has a sharper sense of focus for the competing narratives that underlie a marriage. This double portrait of Stieglitz and O'Keeffe is the work of a master.”—Judith Thurman, author of Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette and Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller