Photographer Eileen Cowen has exhibited in over 30 solo shows over the past four decades. The main inspiration from her work comes from European painters from the 15th and 19th century. She combines both romanticism and surrealism into her pieces. She draws on inspiration from figures, and the world around her. Many of her photographs feature a combination of photos that she places together to form one large work.
The overriding feeling I recieve from her work is the concept of loneliness. Especially in her works like “Landmines” and “Night Meal” her use of lighting and combinations of photographs leaves the viewer a bit unsettled. She creates a vignette around many of her photographs to eye in on key aspects of the photograph she wants to viewer to focus on.
One of my favorite works of hers is “Untitled” from her collection Disappearing from inches. On one side of the photograph a hand slowly strips away words from a book while on the other side a bed’s linens are stripped away from it’s mattress. This similarity between two totally different objects emulates the idea of relaxation, simplifying your life until only the important things remain.
Cowin is also talented at creating simple photographs with no obvious meaning. She is a vvery talented photographer and I think I can learn alot from her as I take my own photographs to work from for senior seminar.