(American, b.1943) is an artist and photographer who is most well-known for creating a series of compositions featuring dogs. Wegman was born in Holyoke, MA. In 1965, Wegman graduated from Massachusetts College of Art with a BFA in Painting. Two years later, he received an MFA in Painting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Wegman had originally intended to pursue painting as a career. It was while he was employed as a teacher at California State University in Long Beach that Wegman acquired the first of the Weimaraners he would later feature in his photographs. Named for the artist Man Ray
(American, 1890–1976), dogs eventually became exceedingly popular as a feature in Wegman's works. Wegman eventually became noted for featuring his Weimaraners in a variety of poses and costumes. In the 1970s, he also began to experiment with creating video shorts of his dogs.
Wegman has served as artist-in-residence at Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, MA. He created his Circus
series during this time. In 1987, he was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award by the college. Throughout the course of his career, Wegman has created photographs that are respected throughout the world. His works are now contained in permanent art collections, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts. In addition to his photos, Wegman's videos have also proven to be successful. Two of his most famous works are La Jolla Vista View
and Dog Duet
. Both his videos and photos have appeared in a variety of films, advertisements, books, and television programs. His works have been featured on Sesame Street
and Saturday Night Live
. In 2006, the Brooklyn Museum explored four decades of his work in a variety of media during the retrospective titled William Wegman: Funny/Strange
. The exhibition also appeared at the Wexner Center for the Arts the following year. In 2007, Wegman was featured as an artist-in-residence at Phillips Academy in Andover, MA. During this time, his work was presented at the Addison Gallery of American Art. Wegman currently lives and works in New York, NY.