July 7, 2015
Emmet & Edith  Gowin - Hall of Fame Induction

Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History is inducting Emmet and Edith Gowin into the Danville Hall of Fame on Friday, July 17, 2015 at 5:30 p.m.. Emmet Gowin, one of the most influential photographers in the past 50 years, initially gained recognition for his black and white images of his wife, Edith Morris, many of which were taken in Danville, Virginia. A Professor Emeritus at Princeton University, Gowin has exhibited extensively in several countries, authored seven books, and received numerous awards. The induction ceremony, which is free and open to the public, will be in the new Danville Hall of Fame gallery in the Danville Museum at 975 Main Street in Danville, Virginia.

The Danville Hall of Fame was established by the Danville Museum in 1974 to recognize and honor citizens of the area whose achievements have been outstanding. Specific criterion for election to the Hall of Fame are persons of note who have worked within the area and who by achievement in their respective field have attained national stature as to reflect credit upon themselves and consequently upon Danville and Pittsylvania County. The Gowins are the nineteenth inductees into the Danville Hall of Fame.

 Emmet Gowin was born in 1941 in Danville, Virginia. He received a BFA in Graphic Design from the Richmond Professional Institute (now Virginia Commonwealth University) in 1965 and an MFA in Photography from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1967.

While at RISD, Gowin studied with photographer Harry Callahan, who became one of his mentors and greatest influences.   Following his marriage to Edith Morris, also of Danville, in 1964, Gowin began making memorable portraits of her as well as his family members. In addition to his work in portraiture, Gowin has explored landscape and aerial photography since the 1980s, documenting sites in the Czech Republic, Mexico, the Middle East, Japan, and the United States. This series addresses concerns over, among other issues, the global impact of irrigation and industrial scale agriculture, natural resource mining, and military occupation and weapons testing on the environment.

For nearly four decades, Gowin’s work has been included in exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad. His solo shows include those at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (1971) and the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. (1983). Gowin’s first midcareer retrospective was organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and later traveled to seven venues (1990-93); his first European retrospective was organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and later traveled to seven venues (1990-93); his first European retrospective appeared at the Espace Photographie Marie de Paris (1992). The Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut, presented a traveling exhibition that included eight total venues across the country (2002-2004). A career retrospective was published in 2013 by the Foundation Mapfre, Madrid in association with Aperture and exhibited in Madrid, Bilbao, Paris, and Bogota.

Gowin has had three exhibitions in his hometown at the Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History: Photographs: Emmet Gowin and Glenn Scarboro (1975),   Emmet Gowin: Changing the Earth. Glenn Scarboro: Drawing with Light (2004), and Nine Visions: Photography with Southern Vision (2011).

Throughout his career, Gowin has received numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship (1974), two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships (1977, 1979), the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts from the State of Pennsylvania (1983), the Friends of Photography Peer Award (1992), and a Pew Fellowship in the Arts (1993). Gowin taught in the Visual Arts Program at Princeton University from 1973 until his retirement in 2010, and was honored with the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1997.

Gowin’s work can be found in museum collections worldwide, including the Art Institute of Chicago; the Cleveland Museum of Art; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Tokyo Museum of Art; the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut, and the National Gallery, Washington, D.C.

Monographs published on Gowin’s work include Emmet Gowin/Photographs (1976); Emmet Gowin/Photographs 1966-1983 (1983); Emmet Gowin/Photographs: This Vegetable Earth is But A Shadow (1990); Emmet Gowin: Aerial Photographs (1998); Emmet Gowin: Changing the Earth (2002); Mariposas Nocturnas – Edith in Panama (2006); and Emmet Gowin (A Fifty Year Retrospective) (2013, Madrid).

As of this writing, Gowin’s current exhibition, “Hidden Likeness: Emmet Gowin,”is at the Morgan Library and Museum, New York through September 20, 2015.

 For more information, visit the museum’s website, www.danvillemuseum.org or call (434) 793-5644.



Glenn Scarboro,


Pace/MacGill Gallery  


Awards and Trophy Shop and Custom Framing  

Rick and Kristen Barker  

Jim and Kimberly Bebeau  

Robert Friedman    

Jeffrey D. Gignac

The Gowin Family    

Alison and Bill Hollandsworth

Barry Koplen    

Sam and Faye Kushner  

Janet Laughlin

Kurt and Winifred Lindquist    

The Morris Sisters    

Cecil and Jane Murray

Rachel Schoonover

Dr. and Mrs. Franklin E. Russell

Benton and Helen Scarboro

Kathy and Gene Smith

Joseph and Alison Turner

Dan and Vickie Vaden

Jeff Whetstone    

William Wylie

The Zimmerman Family