Thomas Joshua Cooper: In The Near Field

22 Sep-29 Oct 2022


Annely Juda Fine Art is proud to present its first exhibition of celebrated landscape photographer Thomas Joshua Cooper. The exhibition In The Near Field  will include works from three series: The British Quartets, European Waterfalls and Following the English Greenwich Meridian – 0° Longitude.

Cooper was born in California in 1946 and completed a MA in Art specializing in photography at the University of New Mexico in 1972.  He has for many years lived in Scotland and founded the new Fine Art Photography department at Glasgow School of Art in 1982.  As with other land based artists such as Richard Long and Hamish Fulton, Cooper has spent much of his time travelling the globe, capturing extraordinary images at significant locations, often at its extremities. His stunning large scale black and white photographs encapsulate the psychological impact of a particular place through both physical and atmospheric elements. For Cooper, a single image can involve months of planning, preparation and exacting travel.  He relies solely on his antique field camera to capture his contemplative and intricately detailed single exposures, developed and printed using silver gelatine and chloro-bromide as in the earliest 19th century processes. 

In his text for the catalogue accompanying the exhibition, Russ Anderson writes…

“There is in this work an unspoken recognition that the interfaces of rock and water, of atmosphere and light, of place and time, will always be changing, perhaps, dramatically altered, but those invisible connections will always be there for us to reach into.

Cooper’s earlier observations of the edge of the earth were made looking out from Island Britain, the land he now knows as home. These are elemental meeting places which over the years he has continued to explore. Home, close to home, not far from home, within reach, yet still tantalizingly remote. …

For most of his explorations Cooper has chosen to reach beyond our civilized world, to locations inconceivably remote, to work on “the wild uninhabited perimeter of the territorial world”, in those places he describes as “the far field”….But he is also deeply drawn to those unseen places, often much closer to home, which for the most part elude our attention. These places in “the near field” are “rural, usually inhabited yet still peripheral” to the civilized world. We, perhaps, would perceive them as part of our interior, yet they are still invisible, and we will most often struggle there to find the meeting places of the elements and our relationship to them.”

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