This beautifully written book weaves together biographical, historical, and artistic strands to present a colorful tapestry of the photographer Alfred Stieglitz’s (1864–1946) early life and work. Generously illustrated, the volume includes photographs Stieglitz took in Europe (some rarely seen), his first works in the United States, and Katherine Hoffman’s new photographs of important sites in young Stieglitz’s life. The book is the first to look closely at the photographer’s formative years and photographic works before 1917.
Although Stieglitz was born in New Jersey, his ancestry lay in Germany, where he spent some of his high school and university years. Stieglitz: A Beginning Light traces the lasting influences of European culture on his work, as well as the impact of American democratic traditions. The book also recounts his tireless and often lonely efforts as a young photographer, editor, writer, and gallery director to gain recognition for the Modernist cause and for photography as a fine art.