The established auction house Blomqvist has housed many an art auction. Their incredible rooms give presence for 3 artists whom are dedicated to life, art, history and juxtaposition of those elements.
Jeff Cowen’s large format pieces are seen through sculptural presences, presents the viewer with painterly-layered portraits, beautiful in their abstraction, an energetic balance between subject and matter. Through the past 50 years Arno Minkkinen has create self-portraits where he becomes one with the nature that surrounds him. Yamamoto Masao has his small and poignant work that when presented together creates visual poems that linger on the mind.
Jeff Cowen is an energetic artists that needs to create in life. He is driven by art history, old painters, sculptures, and bringing it into the contemporary art world. His medium is photography. Since the mid 1990’s Cowen has used black-and-white film photography to create incredible art portraits. He utilizes the human figure, landscapes, and still life, interlocked with abstract thought he produces challenging layered work. Cowen’s large format silver gelatin prints evolve from hours in the darkroom where he dances between the developer and chemicals producing unique painterly pieces. Once out of the darkroom and dried the work in itself becomes sculptures when presented on the wall, framed or not. He often experiments with variations of one image for more than a year before he’s ready to share it, pushing his medium beyond set boundaries.
//I approach every subject in the same way, whether it’s a landscape, a person, or a still life. The subject has to nourish me and speak to me in a spiritual way. All my subjects have a certain energy. When I saw the landscape in Mallorca and the sculpture in Potsdam I felt they both had something otherworldly about them. Although these subjects are not physically alive, they spoke to me. Transferring this to my photo works is much harder. You can’t let it happen organically, as I do with my head photographs. So I try to transform the landscape or sculpture through my process, in the hope that they start breathing. In essence, if I could articulate what I felt the subject would say, I wouldn’t be photographing, I would have become a writer. I see things and they give me a certain feeling inside and I try to describe this feeling with the camera.// Jeff Cowen //Huis Marseille Musee
// I have discussed the spiritual traditions of Japan, and when I create my art, I have constantly been forced to ask myself: What kind of pictures do I want to create? What is the purpose of creating them? What pictures should I be creating, as an artist living here and now? However, it is only recently, after discovering that the spirit of the Japanese people since ancient times, also lives within me, that I have finally been able to catch a glimpse of the answer.
When I created the two series called "A Box of Ku" and "Nakazora", it was through a process of trial and error. Later, by extracting the essence of all that had accumulated through those 15 years, I arrived at the "Kawa=Flow" series. I believe this work reflects my arriving at a deeper understanding of the purpose of my art.
In my latest work, "Shizuka=Cleanse", I have developed this further and attempted to create a series of pictures that hopefully will shine a light into the viewer's heart, stirring that indefinable "something" that I believe exists deep within each of us. //