Elliott Erwitt as born in France in 1928, but moved to the United State in 1939. He studied at the Los Angeles City College before returning to Europe and beginning his photography career in Italy and France.
Erwitt met the fellow photographers Edward Steichen, Robert Capa, and Roy Stryker who all took a liking to work. Robert Capa, co-founder of Magnum Photos later invited Erwitt to join the international photographic cooperative.
New York, Dance School, 1977
Erwitt uses black and white film photography to capture decisive moments, but also insignificant every day moments.
One of his most popular photographs is that of his first wife and his first daughter, Ellen. It has become an iconic mother and child image. Erwitt has six children and loves photographing children.
New York, 1953
Another popular subject of Erwitt's is dogs, especially using humour composition.
New York City, 1988
In the 1950s Erwitt also photographed celebrities including Marilyn Monroe and Jacqueline Kennedy.
Erwitt has an amazing ability to capture images that evoke emotion like his photograph of Jacqueline Kennedy at her husband John F. Kennedy's funeral.
Marilyn Monroe, New York, 1956
Jacqueline Kennedy, Arlington, 1963
Now 83-years-old, Erwitt remains an active member of Magnum Photos, he has created short films, written over 20 books, and taken thousands of photos. He has even created an alter ego named, Andre S. Solidor, a contemporary French artist who he uses to poke fun at the excess of contemporary photography today.
Erwitt's book on his alter ego Andre S. Solidor
Smoking Fish, Andre S. Solidor
Erwitt's work is an asset to the photography community. He will probably always be remember for his photographs of ironic and absurd situations, particularly of children and dogs, and for his master of Henri Cartier Bresson's decisive moment.
New York, East Hampton, 1981
Photo on the covoer of Erwitt's book 'Dogs'
Segregated Water Fountains, 1950
Paris, France, 1989