Harry Callahan

Harry Callahan | American, 1912 - 1999

Harry Callahan was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. He purchased his first camera in 1938 and joined the camera club at Chrysler Motors, where he worked at the time. Largely impacted by a 1941 lecture and workshop given by Ansel Adams, Callahan decided to focus his career on photography and the teaching of the art. In 1946 Callahan was hired by László Moholy-Nagy to teach photography at the Institute of Design in Chicago where he taught until 1961. From there he moved to the Rhode Island School of Design, where he taught until his retirement in 1977.

Throughout his career, Callahan worked with a varying array of subjects. Landscapes, city streets, pedestrians and portraits of his wife, Eleanor, received much of Callahan's concentration over the years. With a characteristic sharpness and a strong sense of design, Callahan is known for his ability to transform his subjects into stunning compositions of understated elegance.