In EMMET GOWIN, a retrospective from 1967 to the present, we come to know and appreciate the retired Princeton University professor's singular vision. What began as an intimate love story between two people broadens to embrace the natural world. Yet, the intimacy of his family portraits never diminishes. (Joanne Ciccarello The Christian Science Monitor 2013-12-20)
An in-depth look at one of America's most overlooked photographers. (Sean O'Hagan The Guardian 2013-12-07)
Beautifully understated design, great printing and solid scholarship. (Alec Soth The Telegraph 2013-12-05)
" My age now is 25 and I have been photographing for almost six years. From the beginning I wanted to make pictures so potent that I would not need to say anything about them": This is how Emmet Gowin began the artist's statement for his graduate thesis project in 1967. He went on to career producing images full of beauty, mystery and spirituality. Fundacion Mapfre mounted a retrospective of Gowin's work in Madrid earlier this year, and issued this catalogue with the richly reproduced images. The book includes much analysis, at times over-wrought. But it also includes the transcript of a talk Gowin gave in 2009 when he retired from teaching at Princeton University after 36 years. What he had to say was engaging, insightful and inspiring. The catalogue traces the full arc of his career, starting with his earliest images of his wife and muse, Edith, and her extended family in Danville, Virginia. Gowin's artistic collaboration with his wife is at the root of all of his work. It was through Edith that he found his voice as an artist, and he had her in mind when he concluded the 1967 artist's statement by writing, " For me, pictures provide a means of holding, intensely, a moment of communication between one human and another." (David Walker PDN 2013-12-01)
A beautiful and long awaited monograph of quiet and intimate influence from a master photographer and teacher Emmet Gowin-whose writing is as eloquent and profound as his images are beautiful and sincere. (Phil Bicker TIME Lightbox 2013-11-25)
A beautiful and long awaited monograph of quiet and intimate influence from a master photographer and teacher Emmet Gowin-whose writing is as eloquent and profound as his images are beautiful and sincere. (Phil Bicker TIME 2013-11-25)
This catalog showcases Gowin's brilliant versatility, from intimate studies of his wife and family to aerial shots of environ - mental woes to more recent abstract composites. (Jack Crager American Photo 2013-11-01)
Throughout his prolific career as a photographer, Emmet Gowin has threaded together seemingly disparate subjects: his wife, Edith, and their extended family; American and European landscapes; aerial views of environmental devastation, brought together by his ongoing interest in issues of scale, the impact of the individual, and notions of belonging. This long-awaited survey pays tribute to Gowin's remarkable career and his impact on the medium. Following his marriage to Edith Morris in 1964, Gowin began work on a series of images of his extended family that is now recognized as a touchstone of twentieth-century American photography. He photographed the children and the aging parents, and made intimate portraits of his wife, continuing a photographic tradition inherited from his mentor, Harry Callahan, with whom he studied in the 1960s. His focus broadened in the 1980s, when he began an exploration of landscape and aerial photography, most specifically in his documentation of Mount St. Helens and the American West. He has photographed in the Czech Republic, Italy, Mexico, Japan and the United States, with a continued interest in irrigation, mining and natural resources, and the effects of military testing on the environment. As a photography professor at Princeton University from 1973 to 2009, Gowin has exerted a powerful influence on several generations of photographers.
Emmet Gowin (born 1941) earned his MFA in photography from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1967, after studying graphic design as an undergraduate. He has had solo exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Corcorcan Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia Museum of Art; and Escape Photographie Marie de Paris. Gowin has published more than six monographs, and has been awarded several honors, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, the Pew Fellowship for the Arts and the President's Award for Distinguished Teaching.