Brett Weston: Photographs
June 20–December 7, 2014
Gallery 321


The American Brett Weston(1911-1993) generated lyrical and often sensuous photographs in the genres of still life and landscape. He exploited the aesthetic potential of large-format negatives and high-contrast printing to create crisply-rendered imagery with strong rhythms of light and shadow.

Through twelve vintage black-and-white photographs, this exhibition spans the last three decades of Weston's acclaimed career, from 1950 to 1980. His subjects include both manmade artifacts and natural geography, ranging from dramatic northern California beaches close to his home to the desert Southwest and lush Hawaiian terrain.

Brett Weston showed exceptional talent at an early age and apprenticed with his father, the famed photographer Edward Weston. Brett continued the modernist visual language of form that his father pioneered, yet he moved further than him toward abstraction. Notably, Brett Weston's close cropping and intense focus on details created a potent ambiguity where the subjects themselves seem to dissolve into patterns of pure tone and line.

This display celebrates a substantial gift of prints from the Brett Weston Archive, as well as drawing from earlier gifts to the Museum. Brett Weston: Photographs is curated by Eric Lutz, associate curator of prints, drawings and photographs.