Dawoud Bey


Dawoud Bey (born David Edward Smikle; November 25, 1953) is an American photographer, artist and educator known for his large-scale art photography and street photography portraits, including American adolescents in relation to their community, and other often marginalized subjects. In 2017, Bey was named a fellow and the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and is regarded as one of the "most innovative and influential photographers of his generation".

Bey is a professor and Distinguished Artist at Columbia College Chicago. According to The New York Times, "in the seemingly simple gesture of photographing Black subjects in everyday life, [Bey, an African American,] helped to introduce Blackness in the context of fine art long before it was trendy, or even accepted"

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Born 25 November 1953 in Jamaica, New York, United States; B.A. from Empire State College, State University of New York (1990); M.F.A. from the Yale University School of Art (1993); documented a collective portrait known as Harlem USA (1975-1979); began teaching photography at the Studio Museum in Harlem and at the Jamaica Arts Center in Queens (1976); mounted his first exhibition at Benin Gallery in Harlem (1976); professor of photography at Columbia College in Chicago since 1998; honors include a New York State Council on the Arts residency fellowship (1984), a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship (1991); exhibitions at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, and the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University.

Country of birth

United States


Artist, educator, photographer, portraitist

ULAN identifier



Dawoud Bey, Dawood Bey, David Edward Smikle

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Information from the Getty Research Institute's Union List of Artist Names ® (ULAN), made available under the ODC Attribution License. Accessed June 12, 2024.