Whether you’re using film, digital, print-making, it’s all about the emotion in the photograph or painting or whatever. Capturing those feelings that come through you—if you’re honest and true, it translates so that other people can feel them.
Cowans is one the most influential artists of his generation. Adger Cowans (b. 1936) was one of the first African American students to earn a degree in Photography from Ohio University in 1958, and furthered his education at the School of Motion Picture Arts and School of Visual Arts in New York City. Following graduation, Cowans obtained a position assisting photographer Gordon Parks at LIFE Magazine. Cowans later served in the United States Navy in Virginia Beach, VA and continued to work as a photographer. Cowans also has a storied career in cinema as a film still photographer on over thirty Hollywood sets, and worked with directors like Francis Ford Coppola, Sidney Lumet, and Spike Lee.
Works by Cowans has been exhibited at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, International Museum of Photography, Museum of Modern Art, The Studio Museum of Harlem, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Harvard Fine Art Museum, Detroit Art Institute, James E. Lewis Museum and numerous other art institutions. Additionally, Cowans’ work is part of many notable collections, including The National Museum of African-American History and Culture, Detroit Institute of Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art among others. Cowans’ work is included in Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963 – 1983 organized by Tate Modern and shown at the Brooklyn Museum, New York; the de Young Museum, San Francisco; the Broad, Los Angeles; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Cowans’ photographs are also currently part of the exhibition Working Together: Louis Draper and the Kamoinge Workshop, organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and will travel to the Whitney Museum of American Art. Cowans lives and works in Bridgeport, CT.
Bruce Silverstein Gallery now represents Cowans.