William Wegman (born December 2, 1943) is an American artist best known for creating series of compositions involving dogs, primarily his own Weimaranersin various costumes and poses
Wegman originally intended to pursue a career as a painter. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from Massachusetts College of Art in 1965 and a Master of Fine Arts degree in painting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1967.
By the early 70s, Wegman’s work was being exhibited in museums and galleries internationally. In addition to solo shows with Sonnabend Gallery in Paris and New York, Situation Gallery in London and Konrad Fisher Gallery in Dusseldorf, his work was included in such seminal exhibitions as “When Attitudes Become Form,” and “Documenta V” and regularly featured in Interfunktionen, Artforum and Avalanche.
While he was in Long Beach Wegman got his dog, Man Ray, with whom he began a long and fruitful collaboration. Man Ray, known in the art world and beyond for his endearing deadpan presence, became a central figure in Wegman’s photographs and videotapes. In 1982, Man Ray died, and was named “Man of the Year” by the Village Voice. It was not until 1986 that Wegman got a new dog, Fay Ray, and another collaboration began marked by Wegman’s extensive use of the Polaroid 20 x 24 camera. With the birth of Fay’s litter in 1989, Wegman’s cast of grew to include Fay’s offspring — Battina, Crooky and Chundo — and later, their offspring: Battina’s son Chip in 1995, Chip’s son Bobbin in 1999 and Candy and Bobbin’s daughter Penny in 2004.
He appeared on The Colbert Report in 2010.
Wegman is the author of numerous books for children, including the New York Times bestseller Puppies. His latest children’s book, Flo & Wendell, is published with Dial Books for Young Readers.