Tristan's Gallery

Wynn Bullock

Bullock often intended his realistic images to be viewed as "equivalents," photographic images that serve as visual metaphors for larger ideas, such as the passing of time and the inevitability of death. Occasionally, he treated these themes surrealistically. The penetrating, enigmatic, and almost mystical nature of his images is accomplished through formal beauty matched with provocative imagery. Bullock wanted to jolt people to new heights of visual and self-awareness by encouraging them to relate to nature directly, unencumbered by traditional modes of visual and abstract thinking. His dramatic photographs have been characterized as showing the inner essence of nature, powerfully reflecting its mysterious beauty on a level extending beyond the everyday. 

Wynn Bullock was born in the United States in 1902. He started his career as a concert tenor in 1921, then in 1931 he briefly studied law, but turned to photography in 1937 after being influenced by the work of Man Ray and Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. Bullock was then educated under Edward Kaminski at the Art Center School, Los Angeles. In 1948 he met and began a lifelong friendship with Edward Weston, a relationship that continually influenced his life as a photographer. The photographs, writings, and teachings of Wynn Bullock have inspired generations of photographers. His photographs are in over 80 museum collections including, The HallMark Collection of Photography, The Museum of Modern Art, The Center for Creative Photography, and The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.