Coplans, John - A Body
This oversize compilation of self-portraits comprises 400 black-and-white images, enlarged (some are foldouts) and grouped according to various parts of photographer Coplans's cropped and headless body. As in an earlier book about the artist and his career, Self-Portrait: John Coplans, 1984-1997, textual content is limited; 25 pages of text include an artist's statement, a chronology, two interviews, and a listing of the artist's exhibitions. The value of this work rests in its scope rather than in its depth, as it covers the almost-20-year period during which Coplans photographed his aging, naked body. A painter, magazine editor, and museum director, Coplans has established a position for himself and his self-portraits by transcending traditional boundaries, at times alluding to various art historical works and establishing relationships between photography and the other visual arts. Because Coplans is a well-known art-world personality whose works are found internationally in more than 65 museums, this volume is strongly recommended for all art collections covering photography but particularly for those that do not include any works on Coplans's self-portraits and career. Monographic publications pertaining to this artist's works and career are largely unobtainable in book markets.
While Coplans has published abbreviated versions of his nude portraits in catalogs and small format books, A Body is the first publication to present the full emotional impact of this important work in an oversized monograph that takes the viewer on a protean voyage through, inside, around, and all over the human body.
For thirty-three years, John Coplans has photographed his body nude. He made his first picture of his back and hands in 1978 when he was fifty-eight and the last in 2001, at the age of eighty-one. Mythic in scope and unflinching in its examination of one person’s humanness and mortality, Coplans transcends, in this sequence of 115 images, the boundaries of photography as an art. A painter by training and a self-taught photographer by choice, Coplans uses his own headless body as his subject matter and as his medium to investigate every inch and idea about his maleness. Epic, grotesque, bittersweet, sensual, provocative, poignant, funny, and even—at times—absurd, Coplans achieves a visual meditation on the compelling relationship between sensuality, aging, and death that is unparalleled in the history of the medium.
Item Weight : 3.6 pounds
Hardcover : 160 pages
ISBN-10 : 1576871363
ISBN-13 : 978-1576871362
Dimensions : 9.2 x 0.8 x 13.5 inches
Publisher : powerHouse Books; 1st edition (March 1, 2002)
Language : English