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1890-1976 Man Ray was born in Philadelphia American photographer and leading figure in the artistic avant-garde in Paris of the 1920s He studied at the National Academy of Design in New York City and held his first one-man show of paintings in 1912 With his friend the French painter Marcel Duchamp he helped to found the New York City Dada group in 1917 Under Duchamps influence he began to work with new materials and techniques for example painting with an airbrush on glass and other surfaces His ready-madessuch as his flatiron with tacks projecting from the bottom called The Gift 1921 Museum of Modern Art New York Citywere made from everyday manufactured objects He also pioneered in kinetic works which have moving parts Going to Paris in 1921 he developed Rayographs abstract images made by placing objects on light-sensitive surfaces He also became involved in surrealism and made art films including Ltoile de Mer 1928 The expressive possibilities of photography interested him increasingly and in California from 1940 to 1946 he taught the subject In later years in France he experimented with new ways of making color prints and he published an autobiography Self Portrait 1963 In the spirit of Dada and Surrealism Man Ray has said he created works of art designed to amuse annoy bewilder mystify and inspire reflection If there is one area in the arts in which Man Ray has left an indelible mark it is in photography Starting with his experiments in Paris in 1921-22 Man Ray has consistently pushed the formal and imaginative boundaries of photography into the outer limits of creative expression At 50 Man Ray was already a mature artist with an international reputation During the Hollywood years he not only produced a prodigious number of paintings but he created a large body of work in photography and many objects of my affection as he liked to call them Perhaps the most compelling object of
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