brett-weston.jpg

Brett Weston (b. 1911 – d.1993) was the second of the four sons of photographer Edward Weston and Flora Chandler. He began taking photographs in 1925, while living in Mexico with Tina Modotti and his father. He began showing his photographs with Edward Weston in 1927, was featured at the international exhibition at Film und Foto in Germany at age 17, and mounted his first one-man museum retrospective at age 21 at the De Young Museum in San Francisco in January 1932.

Weston's earliest images from the 1920s reflect an intuitive and sophisticated sense of abstraction. He began photographing the dunes at Oceano, California, in the early 1930s. Brett preferred the high gloss papers and ensuing sharp clarity of the gelatin silver photographic materials of the f64 Group rather than the platinum matte photographic papers common in the 1920s and encouraged Edward Weston to explore the new silver papers in his own work.

Throughout the decades of the 1950s and 1970s, Brett Weston's style changed sharply and was characterized by high contrast, abstract imagery. The subjects he chose were, for the most part, not unlike what interested him early in his career; plant leaves, knotted roots and tangled kelp along the beach. He concentrated mostly on close-ups and abstracted details, but his prints reflected a preference for high contrast that reduced his subjects to a pure form.

 Brett Weston’s lifetime devotion and total involvement with the medium created a body of work and a contribution to photography that transcends comparisons to his father and has few equals in contemporary photography.

In November of 1996, Oklahoma City collector Christian Keesee acquired from the Brett Weston Estate the most complete body of Weston's work in existence. As one of the largest and most significant collections by an individual American photographer, The Brett Weston Archive, founded in 1997, serves as a resource for museums, collectors, historians, and publishers worldwide.