Stieglitz, Alfred (1864–1946) By Hartel Jr., Herbert R.
Alfred Stieglitz (1864–1946) was an American art collector, dealer and photographer who was one of the earliest supporters of modernist art in the United States. Stieglitz was born in 1865 in Hoboken, New Jersey, to an affluent German-Jewish family. He studied at City College in New York for two years and then at the Technische Hochschule in Berlin for three years, before returning to New York. Although trained in engineering, Stieglitz became interested in photography while in Germany. He promoted photography as a legitimate form of art and expression, which was a radical idea at the time. This led him to establish, in 1902, the Photo-Secession, a group of photographers who believed that photography needed to be considered a fine art and not a technical, manual craft. In 1903 Steiglitz started Camera Work, his own publication on modern art, which he published until 1917. Camera Work published photographs, reproductions of modernist artworks, and essays, treatises, statements and criticism about modernist art and theory. In 1904, Stieglitz opened his first gallery, the ‘‘Little Galleries of the Photo-Secession’’ (later known as ‘‘291’’ for its address on Fifth Avenue), where he introduced the European avant-garde to the USA. He donated works for the Armory Show in New York in 1913 and also purchased works from the exhibition.