John Jonas Gruen born 1926 American, born France Photographers, Writer/Poets
John Gruen and his wife, the painter Jane Wilson, began spending summers in Water Mill in 1960, when a successful show of Wilson’s at Tibor de Nagy enabled them to buy a carriage house on Cobb Road. They had already been visiting the East End as guests, and Gruen, a writer and composer as well as a photographer, photographed the area's artists and writers during the 1950s. Though as a writer he regularly contributed to The New York Times, Vogue, ARTnews and Dance Magazine, among other publications, his photographs, and especially his portraits, stand as a definitive record of the East End art colony since 1957. From Willem de Kooning to April Gornik, from Fairfield Porter to Dan Flavin, from Frank O’Hara to Edward Albee, from Marisol to Jasper Johns, it is a rare art-world luminary who has escaped Gruen’s lens. “All I seek to do is capture the light in an artist’s eyes,” he has said.
[preface to The Sixties: Young in the Hamptons]
John Gruen first visited the East End during the 1950s and bought a carriage house in Water Mill with his wife, the painter Jane Wilson, in 1960.