Cover image for Fay
Wegman, William.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Hyperion, [1999]

Physical Description:
127 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 29 cm
Personal Subject:
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TR729.D6 W42 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



Writing with characteristic wit and heartfelt candour, William Wegman, world-renowned photographer and artist, chronicles his life with Fay Ray, the world-famous weimaraner which has been the star of many of his books and videos. Full-colour photographs throughout including many never before published family photos, video and film stills, and studio portraits.

Author Notes

William Wegman was born in 1943 in Holyoke, Massachusetts. He received a B.F.A. in painting from the Massachusetts College of Art in 1965. In 1967, He received an M.F.A. in painting and printmaking at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. Wegman taught painting at various universities, but later became interested in photography and video.

Wegman may be best-known for his photography involving his Weimaraner dogs in various poses and costumes. His work can be seen in museums throughout Europe and the United States, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Wegman was on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson Show in 1992, and his dogs have had appearances on Saturday Night Live and Sesame Street.

Wegman lives in New York and Maine.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Once upon a time, an artist had a dog, a weimaraner he named, after the great dadaist, Man Ray. Because the dog wanted to help out at work, the artist started photographing the dog in poses that encouraged verbal-visual puns. The photos were a hit, and soon William Wegman was more famous for them than for his paintings. But a dog's life being shorter than a human's, Man Ray died, and Wegman figured a phase of his career was over. Luckily, he eventually found another weimaraner, the subject of this loving, frequently hilarious, copiously and gorgeously illustrated memoir--Fay Ray, whose name recalls that of King Kong's lissome leading lady in the classic 1933 film. As smart and as willing to model as Man Ray, Fay spurred Wegman to innovate. Her beauty encouraged him to use human clothes with her, and her expressiveness led him to cast her in retellings of classic fairy tales and in parodic videos (e.g., The Hardly Boys in Hardly Gold"Hardly boys, they were girls and dogs"). After she whelped and the puppies grew up, Fay became the grande dame of a canine acting dynasty that has continued after her death in 1995. Fairly glowing with affection in both text and pictures, Fay may prove a classic in the literature of man's best friend. --Ray Olson

Publisher's Weekly Review

Just when Wegman seems to have stretched his weimaraner art pretty thinÄwhat with his Fay's Fairy Tales series and concept books published for young readers, videos and merchandiseÄcomes a disarming book to remind everyone of the wit and offhand originality that put Wegman on the map in the first place. This chronicle of his famous dog Fay Ray, who died in 1995, is also an exploration of the art she inspired, not only specific photographs but motifs, themes and techniques that he developed in working with her. It is also almost always funny, as Wegman manages to convey his love for his dogs and his work without ever taking himself too seriously or falling into jargon. When two of her puppies joined Fay in the studio, for example, Fay "added stern to her portfolio of manners. Greta Garbo cross-fading with Joan Crawford." Readers don't need to have dogs to understand and appreciate his handling of Fay: "[Dogs] will go along with just about anything you do as long as it keeps them in the game," he explains. Technical discussions stay light and pertinent; trained as a painter, Wegman identifies himself as "a resident alien in the world of photography," and he retains an outsider's ability to characterize his observations simply. The generous supply of color photographs and stills attracts the reader's attention; the deadpan intelligence of the text holds it. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved