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Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit

Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit

[Tampa, FL] Peter J. Cohen is a New York-based collector of snapshots and vernacular photographs. From a modest start at a local flea market over two decades ago, Cohen’s collection has since swelled to more than 60,000 photographs organized into 130 categories.

Today Cohen continues acquiring discarded or disowned photographic material from dealers and eBay. The archive spans much of the twentieth century and encompasses many different processes and formats, including gelatin silver prints, cyanotypes, hand-tinted photos, chromogenic color prints, Polaroids, real photo postcards, and complete photo albums.

From the Cohen Collection, the late gallerist Julie Saul and independent curator Carly Ries spent a year culling images for “Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit.”

“As photography gathered momentum as a medium for self-expression, so did women,” writes the Tampa Museum of Art. “In portraits and performances for the camera, we see women seeking out new ways of being in the world, living out new forms of independence, playing with the possibility of different identities, and sharing an impulse to create from behind the lens and in front of the camera.”

“Taking Pictures: Women of Independent Spirit” is on view at the Tampa Museum of Art, Apr. 15 – Oct. 8, 2023.

In addition to its daytime hours, the Tampa Museum of Art is open until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. This is ideal for those who are unable (or unwilling) to visit museums by day. #EveryMuseum in America could be open late at least once a month.


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