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Release:Jan. 11, 2002

Museum of Art shows Wegman's photos of high-fashion dogs Jan. 25-April 14

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- "William Wegman: Fashion Photographs," an exhibition featuring photographs of Weimaraner dogs modeling designer fashions, will be on display at the University of Iowa Museum of Art Jan. 25-April 14. Admission to the museum and to the exhibition will be free.

The exhibition of 34 Polaroid photographs was organized by the Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, Ala., and curated by David Moos and Mary Dinaburg. It has traveled to different venues throughout the United States.

To introduce the public to the exhibition, curators Pamela Trimpe and Kathleen Edwards of the UI Museum of Art, will lead a gallery tour of the exhibition at 4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31. Other related events at the museum will be:

-- "If Dogs Are Man's Best Friend, Why Are So Many Homeless?" a lecture by Misha Goodman, director of the Iowa City Animal Care and Adoption Center, at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17; and

-- "Going to the Dogs," a slide lecture presented by Barbara Jedda McNab, executive director of The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog, St. Louis, at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24.

Selected videos by Wegman of his dogs will be shown on Sunday afternoons at the museum throughout the exhibition.

In conjunction with the exhibition, the Iowa Children's Museum at Coral Ridge Mall in Coralville will present "Once Upon a Dog," opening Jan. 26, with interactive components for children and their families designed to bring Wegman's work to life.

The Children's Museum will also present a series of public programs related to Wegman's works during the exhibition. Among these will be a Pet Photo Contest, with the winners announced at the UI Museum of Art on Sunday, Feb. 24, prior to the lecture by McNab, and winners' photos displayed in the museum Members' Lounge Feb. 24 through March 10.

Wegman is best known for his work with his family of Weimaraner dogs: Chip, Battina, Chundo and Crooky. The dogs appear in Wegman's fine-art photographs, as well as on calendars, books and note cards. They have appeared on popular television shows including "Sesame Street" and "Saturday Night Live," and on cable TV's Nickelodeon channel. Wegman has also written several children's books.

In the exhibition, the dogs model designer hats, gloves, wigs, shoes, dresses and suits from world-renowned designers Issey Miyake, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Todd Oldham, Alexander McQueen, Anna Sui and others.

Wegman got his start using Weimaraners as his subject matter in the mid-1970s with his playful photographs of his first Weimaraner, Man Ray. His next model was Fay Ray, whom he began to surround in fabrics and clothing. Three of the four current models were born in 1989 in a single litter of Fay Ray's puppies.

Wegman is very aware of the unique personality of each dog, and he uses these personalities along with designer fashions to present a twist to haute couture photography.

"My Weimaraners are perfect models," Wegman says. "Their elegant slinky forms are covered in gray -- and gray, everyone knows, goes with anything."

The appearance of the exhibition at the UI Museum of Art is sponsored by the Hudson River Gallery and Frame Co., and the media partner is the Iowa City Press-Citizen. Programming related to the exhibition is presented in conjunction with the Iowa Children's Museum and the Iowa City Animal Care and Adoption Center. Programming for the Iowa Children's Museum events is sponsored in part by Younkers.

M.C. Ginsberg Objects of Art, Inc. of Iowa City is the corporate sponsor for public events at the UI Museum of Art during the 2001-02 season, through the University of Iowa Foundation.

The University of Iowa Museum of Art is located on North Riverside Drive in Iowa City. Museum hours are Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday noon-5:00 p.m. and Thursday and Friday noon-10:00 p.m. Admission is free. Public metered parking is available in the UI parking lots across from the museum on Riverside Drive and just north of the museum.

For more information in the UI Museum of Art visit on the World Wide Web. Information on other UI arts events is available at

For more information on events at the Iowa Children's Museum, call (319) 625-6255.


Jan. 26-April 14:
"Once Upon a Dog," interactive exhibition

Sunday, January 27
Misha Goodman: "Cookies for Canines," 2-4 p.m.
Storytelling with Tanya Alford, 4 p.m.

Saturday, February 9,
Photography Workshop for Kids, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Sunday, February 10
Dog Look-Alike Contest and Storytime, 1 p.m.

Saturday, February 23
SPAY DAY USA with Misha Goodman and Dr. Jennifer K. Doll , 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

Saturday, March 9
Misha Goodman: "Dog Tails, " 1-3 p.m.

Saturday, March 23
Sue Pearson, director, Spot & Co.: "Come Spot, Come!" 1 p.m.

Saturday, March 30
"Oh, I want to be a Dog" (drama production), 2 p.m.

Sunday, April 7
Misha Goodman: "Getting to Know Your Animal Care and Adoption Center," 2-4 p.m.

Sunday, April 14
Dog Parade in Coral Ridge Mall, with special guests: Weimaraner puppies, 2-4 p.m.