Cooper & Gorfer consists of the two artists Sarah Cooper (USA, 1974) and Nina Gorfer (Austria, 1979). With their backgrounds in art, architecture, graphic design and photography, they began their collaboration in 2006. Their work belongs to a narrative tradition within photography existing at the intersection of contemporary photography and 18th and 19th century painting. Place and story are the catalysts of their work, transforming narrative and memories into images that are digitally processed to create painterly collages.
For their exhibition My Quiet of Gold, Cooper and Gorfer traveled to the rural areas of Kyrgyzstan to collect sagas and stories in conversations and interviews with local inhabitants. Out of these tales, the duo created striking photographic portraits that go far beyond mere documentation to tell and visually interpret romantic-melancholy stories of love, sorrow, and betrayal in a completely new and non-linear ways.
"Like the portrait in Oscar Wilde's novel 'The Picture of Dorian Grey', our images show more than just an objective view of the person portrayed. Instead, they also depict something we cannot see - the past, the insubstantial and intangible, where the life and sentiment of the person photographed are woven together with our perception and experience of the moment. In the end, our pictures are the stories' beautiful remains."
~~ Cooper & Gorfer
Sarah Cooper and Nina Gorfer live and work in Gothenburg, Sweden.
My Quiet of Gold is an exhibition from the renowned Hasselblad Foundation in Gothenburg, and is currently on view at Gestalten Space, Berlin. A book of the same name has also been published, and is available through the gallery.