JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938)

JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938)
The subject of 350 exhibitions in museums and galleries worldwide and two-time Guggenheim Fellow, Joel Meyerowitz is one of the most highly regarded photographers of the second half of the twentieth century. Alongside William Eggleston and Stephen Shore, he drove the repositioning of colour photography from the margins to the mainstream.
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FLORIDA, 1968 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

FLORIDA, 1968

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BALLSTON BEACH, TRURO, 1976 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

BALLSTON BEACH, TRURO, 1976

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PROVINCETOWN, POOL, PASSING STORM, 1976 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

PROVINCETOWN, POOL, PASSING STORM, 1976

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COLD STORAGE BEACH, TRURO, 1976 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

COLD STORAGE BEACH, TRURO, 1976

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BAY/SKY, PROVINCETOWN, 1977 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

BAY/SKY, PROVINCETOWN, 1977

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DOORWAY TO THE SEA, 1982 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

DOORWAY TO THE SEA, 1982

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RED INTERIOR, PROVINCETOWN, 1977 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

RED INTERIOR, PROVINCETOWN, 1977

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HARTWIG HOUSE, TRURO, 1976 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

HARTWIG HOUSE, TRURO, 1976

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PORCH, PROVINCETOWN, 1977 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

PORCH, PROVINCETOWN, 1977

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BAY/SKY, PROVINCETOWN, 1977 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

BAY/SKY, PROVINCETOWN, 1977

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INTERIOR, PROVINCETOWN, 1977 by JOEL MEYEROWITZ (Born 1938) - photograph for sale from Beetles & Huxley

INTERIOR, PROVINCETOWN, 1977

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Early Career

Born on 6 March 1938 in the Bronx, New York City, Joel Meyerowitz studied art and medical illustration at Ohio State University before working as an art director at an advertising agency. Having been inspired after seeing Robert Frank at work on a shoot, Meyerowitz left advertising, bought a camera and began photographing in 1962 on the streets of New York alongside Garry Winogrand and Tony Ray-Jones. In 1968 a solo exhibition of his photographs, Photographs from a Moving Car, was mounted at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Being unaware of the art world prejudice in favour of black and white photography, Meyerowitz began shooting on colour film, producing vibrant, energetic street scenes of New York. Speaking of his move into colour photography, Meyerowitz has said that colour "describes more things". Continuing, he explained, "when I say description, I don't mean mere fact and the cold accounting of things in the frame. I really mean the sensation I get from things their surface and colour my memory of them in other conditions as well as their connotative qualities. Colour plays itself out along a richer band of feelings more wavelengths, more radiance, more sensation." This approach to colour made Meyerowitz (alongside William Eggleston and Stephen Shore) crucial in the repositioning of colour photography from the margins to the mainstream of fine art photography.

Cape Light and Other Works

In the late 1970s, Joel Meyerowitz went to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, with a vintage 8 x 10 inch Deardoff view camera seeking a different kind of photography to the type he had become accustomed to making with his Leica in New York. The resulting book of photographs, Cape Light, first published in 1978, is now regarded as one of the most significant photobooks of the twentieth century. Over the course of two summers Meyerowitz photographed the coast, small towns and inhabitants of the Cape with great sensitivity to the scale and colour of the landscape. The large format camera required him to step back from his usual proximity to his subjects on the streets of New York and take in his larger surroundings. The expansive skies and crystalline colours produced a new kind of photography slow, meditative and experiential.

In 1995 Meyerowitz produced and directed a film, POP, about a three-week road trip he made with his son, Sasha, and his father, Hy, an 87-year-old with Alzheimer's. The film considers the significance of memory with wit and empathy. Meyerowitz is known for photographing the aftermath of the September 11 2001 terror attacks on the World Trade Centre, being one of the only photographers allowed access to the site.

Often working with a large format camera, Meyerowitz is known for his photographs of expansive landscapes and dramatic street scenes. His most recent work has turned to still life and led him to photograph the studios of Cézanne and Giorgio Morandi. The recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities awards and a two-time Guggenheim Fellow, Meyerowitz has published twenty-two books, including a two volume retrospective publication, Taking my Time (2013). His work is held in collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Boston Museum of Fine Art and the Art Institute of Chicago.

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