Martha Cooper: Taking Pictures

Martha Cooper

Martha Cooper is a documentary photographer who has specialized for fifty years in shooting urban vernacular art and architecture. Her books include Subway Art, which was a collaboration with Henry Chalfant, R.I.P.: Memorial Wall Art, Hip Hop Files 1980–1984, We B*Girlz, Street Play, New York State of Mind, Tag Town, Going Postal, Name Tagging, Tokyo Tattoo 1970, Remembering 9/11 and One Week with 1UP. A documentary by Selina Miles, Martha Cooper: A Picture Story, premiered at the 2019 TriBeCa Film Festival in New York City.

Combining photographs and personal artefacts, this retrospective traces her life from her first camera in nursery school in 1946 to her reputation today as a world-renowned photographer. The exhibition covers Cooper’s wide range of subject matter. Many of her photographs have become iconic representations of a time, place, or culture and are distinguished by their frank human vitality, with an eye for preserving details and traditions of cultural significance.