Alfred Stieglitz (Dictionary of World Biography: Twentieth Century)
Article abstract: Stieglitz was a central figure in the development of early twentieth century photography, in the introduction of modern art to the American people, and, most important, in the discovering and fostering of an indigenous American culture.
In 1849, Edward Stieglitz came to America from Hannover-Münden, Germany. After marrying Hedwig Werner in 1862, this German-Jewish immigrant became a successful woolen merchant. On New Year’s Day, 1864, Hedwig gave birth to their first child, Alfred, in Hoboken, New Jersey. Within seven years, the Stieglitz family grew to include two additional sons and three daughters. In 1872, Edward moved his family to Manhattan, New York, where Alfred grew to early manhood. In Manhattan, as in Hoboken, Alfred was infused with an appreciation for art by his family and surroundings. His father, an amateur artist, socialized with artists and decorated his home with prints and art objects of the artists of the day.
Alfred’s interest in photography was indicated at a very early age. At the age of two, he was obsessed with a photograph of his cousin; he carried it with him at all times. At age nine, he encountered his first photographer. The child was completely fascinated with the magical process of film development. When, however, the photographer put carmine on the cheeks of the faces on the tintype and explained that this touch-up made the subjects look more...
(The entire section is 2916 words.)
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