George Tatge was born in Istanbul in 1951 of an Italian mother and American father. He lived in Europe and in the Middle East most of his youth and studied English Literature at Beloit College in Wisconsin, where he also began photographing under the guidance of the Hungarian photographer Michael Simon. In 1973 he moved to Italy where he worked in Rome as a journalist and then in Todi, Umbria, where he lived for 12 years working as a freelance photographer and writer (reviews for Art Forum). His first exhibition in Italy was in 1973 at the Diaframma Gallery in Milan. His first book, Perugia terra vecchia terra nuova, came out in 1984. From 1986 to 2003 he was Director of Photography at the Alinari Archives in Florence. He has held workshops and exhibitions throughout the world and his photographs can be found in major museum collections in the U.S. and in Europe, such as the Metropolitan Museum of New York, the George Eastman House in Rochester, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, the Centre Canadien d’Architecture in Montreal, the Helmut Gernsheim Collection in Mannheim, and the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris. His work has been exhibited at the American Academy in Rome (solo) in 1981, at the MASP of Sao Paulo, Brazil in 1988 (solo), at the Venice Biennale in 1995, at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice in 2005, at the Reiss-Engelhorn Museum in Mannheim in 2003, at the GEH in Rochester in 2004 and at Rome’s MAXXI in 2007. His solo exhibition “Presences–Italian Landscapes” opened at Villa Bardini of Florence in 2008 then traveled to five other cities. In 2010 he was awarded the Friuli Venezia Giulia Prize for Photography.
His name was among the 35 foreign photographers presented in the 2015 Milan show on Italy “Henri Cartier-Bresson and the Others.” His exhibition Italia Metafisica opened in Florence in 2015 and traveled to many cities. The catalog, published by Contrasto, received an IPA award through the Lucie Foundation of N.Y. And in 2016 it won the Ernest Hemingway Award of Lignano Sabbiadoro. In 2019 he opened two major solo exhibitions, Luci di Livorno, at the Museo della Città of Livorno and Il Colore del Caso, at the Palazzo Fabroni in Pistoia.
Tatge works digitally but prefers a 5x7in Deardorff view camera for his own work. He lives in Florence, Italy.