Allen Ayers Dutton was a renowned photographer, artist and teacher. Dutton developed a special interest in photography, and started teaching at Phoenix College in 1960, where he later served as department chair. Allen loved teaching and his classes were in high demand. He treasured life-long friendships with many of his former students.
“Getting to a place where there are no answers” was Dutton’s educational philosophy. The best educators know that learning flourishes when students drive the process, test original theories, reveal unknown truths, and precipitate new ideas. Learning cannot have all the answers if we want new answers to be discovered, or in the case of art, new imagistic ideas to be created. Dutton transported students to places without answers.
In his pioneering tenure at Phoenix College, Dutton curated a collection of photographs by masters of the medium such as Brett and Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, and Minor White. His exhibitions gained national recognition and he exposed a generation of students to the works of these master photographers. Few college campuses were teaching photography in the 1960s, and Dutton quickly created a photography program considered one of the finest in the western United States.
Dutton photographed every community in Arizona, and The Arizona Historical Society houses an archive of more than 25,000 of his photographs. He was also an accomplished painter, depicting the lives of wranglers on the legendary Rocking AD Ranch. Dutton’s work is exhibited worldwide in numerous public collections, including the Center for Creative Photography, Yale University Art Gallery, The Museum of Modern Art, Bibliotheque Nacionale in Paris, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington DC. Mr. Dutton passed away in December, 2017.
In 2010, the Allen A. Dutton Center for Photography, a suite of labs and classroom space at Phoenix College, was dedicated to Dutton in recognition for his lasting contributions to the College and the photography program. Phoenix College will host an exhibition of Dutton’s work March 18 – April 4, 2019 at the Fischl Gallery, with an opening reception March 18 from 5:30 to 8 pm. Dutton’s original signed works will be for sale during the opening reception.
Allen Dutton Photography Exhibition, March 18 – April 4, 2019
Opening Reception, March 18, 5:30 pm
Phoenix College Fischl Gallery – Fine & Performing Arts Building
1202 W. Thomas Road, Phoenix, AZ 85012.
Visit the Fischl Gallery web site for additional details and a listing of other exhibits: phoenixcollege.edu/campus-life/eric-fischl-gallery