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William Wegman
Curled Colors
large format color polaroid
Framed: 24 × 20 inches (61 × 50.8 cm)
Credit Line
Partial gift of the artist and museum purchase with funds provided by Ann Yingling and the Jack W. Lindsay Acquisition Endowment Fund.
Accession Number
William Wegman pursued a simplified approach—a core idea, dog, and prop—throughout his 25-year career with the Polaroid 20 x 24 inch camera starting in 1979. The Polaroid 20 × 24 camera is unique in that it delivers an instant finished photograph. Due to this instant process, the artist was able to quickly react to the image captured in a manner unlike any of the other, slower photographic processes available at that time. In this way, Wegman’s love of the Polaroid format connected him with the immediacy of his drawings and early videos.

Portraits of his Weimaraners, and portraiture in general, is another ongoing motif in the Polaroids. Cropping and framing are utilized literally in the studio and composed as photographic “takes” exposed on film.

Fay Ray was the first dog and muse that Wegman used to “get tall” ̶ anthropomorphizing her into a vertical human form. His collaboration with Fay Ray would lead Wegman to create many human/dog characters, some with human hands and legs activating the dog’s body. Through these portraits we can appreciate Wegman’s sleight of hand, as part artist, part comedian, and part magician.