Lynne Cohen

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Lynne Cohen
Lynne Cohen.jpg
Born (1944-07-03)July 3, 1944
Racine, Wisconsin
Died May 12, 2014(2014-05-12) (aged 69)
McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Nationality American-Canadian
Education University of Wisconsin
Known for Photographer
Awards Governor General's Award
Scotiabank Photography Award

Lynne Cohen (July 3, 1944 – May 12, 2014) was an American-Canadian photographer.[1]


Born in Racine, Wisconsin,[1] Cohen was educated in printmaking and sculpture at the University of Wisconsin,[2] Madison, Wisconsin, and in Ann Arbor and Eastern Michigan University,[1] Ypsilanti, Michigan. She studied for a year at the Slade School of Fine Art in London.[1]

Cohen has lived and worked in Canada since 1973, initially in Ottawa, and in Montreal since 2005.

She taught and provided workshops at several institutions, primarily Eastern Michigan University (1968-1973), Algonquin College (1973-1975), and the University of Ottawa (1974-2005). Cohen has exhibited widely and held artist's residencies across North America and Europe.

In 2005, she was the recipient of the Governor General's Award in Visual and Media Arts.[2]

Cohen was known for her photographs of empty institutional interiors: living rooms, public halls, retirement homes, laboratories, offices, showrooms, shooting ranges, factories, spas, and military installations. Despite this interest in living and working spaces, Cohen's photographs are usually devoid of human presence.[3] She photographed using an 8 x 10" view camera, allowing her to capture great detail, and create very large prints beginning in the mid-eighties. Her work has been published in catalogues such as Occupied Territory (1987) and No Man's Land (2001).[4] In one of her last monographs, Cohen described a major goal in her work, a "long-standing preoccupation with formal, intellectual and ideological camouflage."[5]


Lynne Cohen died of lung cancer at the age of 69 on May 12, 2014,[6] in the palliative care unit at McGill University Health Centre[7] in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. In accordance with her personal wishes, no funeral service was held.[8]



  1. ^ a b c d "Lynne Cohen". National Gallery of Canada. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  2. ^ a b The Canada Council for the Arts - Lynne Cohen Accessed March 10, 2012. archived at Archived June 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Bogardi, Georges (September 2002). "No Man's Land". Canadian Art. 19 (3): 84. Her photographs of interiors—domestic spaces in her early career, mostly institutional spaces in the last two decades or so—are famous for never depicting the people who inhabit them. 
  4. ^ Lynne Cohen on artnet Accessed March 10, 2012.
  5. ^ Cohen, Lynne (2005). Camouflage. Cherbourg: Point du jour. ISBN 2912132444. OCLC 65405255. 
  6. ^ "Canadian Photographer Lynne Cohen Dies at 69". Canadian Art. Retrieved 13 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Ottawa Citizen More Ottawa Citizen. "Lynne Cohen 1944-2014: Artist's eyes were wide-open to the world - Ottawa Citizen". Ottawa Citizen. 
  8. ^ "Canadian Photographer Lynne Cohen Dies at 69". Canadian Art. 
  9. ^ CONTACT photography festival. "Scotiabank CONTACT Photography FestivalLynne Cohen: Nothing Is Hidden". 
  10. ^ Gessell, Paul (February 2, 2006). "Lynne Cohen's indoor spaces give us the chills". The Ottawa Citizen. 
  11. ^ Living Evidence: Lynne Cohen, Roger Mertin. Vancouver: Presentation House Gallery. 1991. ISBN 0-920293-26-3. 


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