Please join Jason Tannen for this in–depth talk that delves into Weegee’s life and time and presents his incredible archive of pictures.
In today’s world, with a plethora of cameras, cellphones, laptops, and tablets, it’s remarkable if any activity, noteworthy or not, fails to be recorded and posted on social media. In the 1930s and 40s however, this ability to capture the highs and lows of human existence was distilled into one notable character: Weegee.
Weegee was the alias for Arthur Fellig (1899–1968). He was the archetypal news photographer of the twentieth century. From the mid– 1930s through the 1940s, his photographs offered gritty tales from the urban jungle to readers of the New York City tabloids.
Weegee condensed whole lives into a single picture, from the grievous to joyous, printed on the fly for the next day’s edition. He was the quintessential hard–boiled, cigar smoking, flashgun–popping character we’ve come to know from numerous pulp fiction and movie story lines. His nightly beat covered fires, automobile crashes, gangland murders, and so much more.
Weegee, “Their First Murder,” 1941, © International Center of Photography
Jason Tannen is a photographer, gallery curator, and educator. He has exhibited his works widely in the United States and internationally, with recent exhibitions in Sacramento; San Francisco; Portland, OR; New York; Rome, Italy; Budapest, Hungary; and Basel, Switzerland.
From 1998 to 2014, he directed the University Art Gallery at California State University, Chico, where he also taught the History of Photography and Film Studies. Prior moving to Chico, he directed the San Francisco Art Commission Gallery, and before that he was Visual Arts Coordinator at Sushi Performance and Visual Art in San Diego.
He received his MFA in Photography from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and his BFA from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, PA.
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