Alfred Stieglitz (American, 1864–1946) was a renowned photographer, who contributed greatly to the development of Modern Art in America in the 20th century. Stieglitz was born in Hoboken, NJ. He studied photochemistry with Herman Wilhelm Vogel at the Technische Hochschule in Berlin from 1882 to 1886, and took his first photograph a year after beginning his studies. Stieglitz traveled widely in Europe, notably in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland, where he also took photographs for many years. In 1890, he returned to New York City, where he got into a partnership with a photogravure firm and took many photographs of the streets.

However, he did not stay in America for long; he returned to Europe in 1894, and was inducted into a pictorialist society in London, the Linked Ring. Eight years later, Stieglitz tried to show the world that pictorialist photography was a Fine Art, through forming the Photo-Secession Movement. A year later, in 1903, he became the publisher and director of the magazine Camera Works, whose graphic section was managed by Edward Steichen (American, 1879–1973). In 1905, Stieglitz and Steichen opened the Little Galleries of the Photo-Secession "291" on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The photographers operated it until 1907, and exhibited some of Stieglitz’s greatest works there, including The Steerage and From the Back Window. Stieglitz''s theories of Modernism and photography culminated in 1922, when he began his series of cloud photographs. Two years later, he married Georgia O''Keeffe, with whom he had shared intellectual and spiritual insights since 1916.

In 1925, Stieglitz opened the Intimate Gallery in New York City. Four years later, he opened another one, American Place, which he operated until his death. He collaborated on some works with Joseph T. Keiley, who was also his friend, and together they invented the glycerine process that enabled partial development of platinum papers, produced joint research on the history of photography, and edited Camera Notes and Camera Works. Stieglitz died in New York City in 1946.

Timeline

1864
Born in Hoboken, New Jersey
1881
Travels to Germany to study engineering
1890
Returns to the United States
1903
Founds and works as editor for 'Camera Work', an elegantly designed journal that included cogent discussion of photography and the other arts
1902–1917
Founds Photo-Secession (Gallery 291) with Edward Steichen at 291 Fifth Avenue in New York
1924
Marries Georgia O'Keeffe
1946
Died in New York City

Exhibitions

2008–2009
Oct. 12 - March 15, "Oceans, Rivers, and Skies: Ansel Adams, Robert Adams, and Alfred Stieglitz", National Gallery of Art, US
1999
April 16 - July 11, "Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O'Keeffe & American Modernism", Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT
1996
Sept. 14 - Dec. 19, "Alfred Stieglitz and Early Modern Photography", Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
1947
June 10 - Sept. 21, "Alfred Stieglitz Exhibition: His Photographs", Museum of Modern Art, NY