Observatories / Laboratories New

Observatories / Laboratories

This large-format monograph offers an opportunity to rediscover the work of Lynne Cohen, an international figure in contemporary photography, on the occasion of her exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. The book presents previously unpublished photographs from the period when Lynne Cohen switched from printmaking and sculpture to large-format camera photography in the 1970s, under the influence of Minimalism, Pop Art and Conceptual Art. The visual body of work, arranged thematically rather than serially, reflects both the artist’s conceptual rigor and her irony as an ongoing investigator of the configuration of social space. 

Cohen creates images devoid of any human presence. She begins by focusing on ordinary private and semi-public interiors - living rooms, banquet halls, waiting rooms, spas - and then on increasingly aseptic places such as laboratories, shooting ranges, observation rooms or training rooms. In these sometimes kitschy settings, a certain mystery and a disturbing atmosphere hovers. The rigorous framing, a certain distance and a light, which underlines materials and surfaces, confer to the places she captures an appearance at the same time «surreal» and artificial. Through the neutrality of the lighting and the absence of characters, the domestic interiors and workplaces evoke a social control that is exercised in a diffuse manner.

Essays by Jean-Pierre Criqui and Andrew Lugg, the artist’s widower and intellectual accomplice, as well as by the exhibition curators Florian Ebner and Matthias Pfaller, shed light on this visual corpus and its critical perception. The testimonies of the artists Ricarda Roggan and Marina Gadonneix reveal the extent to which her work finds important extensions in contemporary photography today.


Link to the video bookflip


Two versions: English and French

Softcover, 24,5 x 31 cm
104 pages, 217 colour and B&W photographs 



Jean-Pierre Criqui, Florian Ebner

Marina Gadonneix , Andrew Lugg

Matthias Pfaller, Ricarda Roggan


Copublished with the Centre Pompidou, Paris


This book has received the precious support of the galleries Stephen Daiter, In Situ – fabienne leclerc, 

Olga Korper, Laroche/Joncas and Jacky Strenz 

as well as of Glen A. Bloom and Deborah M. Duffy.


Lynne Cohen/Marina Gadonneix


Centre Pompidou, Paris

From April 12 to August 28, 2023

ISBN : 978-2-36511-364-9

42,00 €

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