Clement CooperArtist, Curator, Publisher, Community worker
Clement Cooper is a professional creative based in Manchester. He approaches photography as a cohesive whole, from taking and then printing the photographic image; curating his own exhibitions; facilitating workshops; archiving; musical composition; DVD authoring; publication design including marketing the completed project. He lectures extensively and works in close collaboration with his subjects, taking considerable time to develop relationships. In recent years soundtrack has played a crucial role in the final monograph and exhibition presentation. Stunning use of deep chiaroscuro combined with texture, tonal sensuality and an eye for accumulating detail are characteristic of his personal vision. His publications: PRESENCE, DEEP & PRIMARY have all received critical acclaim and his shows have toured throughout the UK as well as internationally. He has for the last 12 years been working on a major book project involving British born practicing young Muslims. The first part of this work, SISTERS was displayed and published in 2005. Soon after, Cooper began travelling to cities and towns across the UK producing portraits and audio recordings for BROTHERS which is due to be published and displayed. To date, Cooper has remained faithful to his original intentions by committing his time and energy in developing his personal vision through direct application rather than choosing to operate within the precious confines of false academia. More importantly, by using his photography as a powerful tool to explore and then present issues others in society think too problematic to address, Cooper has helped create a better atmosphere for inclusion and tolerance. His beautifully poignant and haunting photographs celebrate the multi-cultural and religious diversity of the UK, and speak about wider issues in contemporary urban experience. Cooper's continued experimentation with Apple video and audio computer editing software programmes combined with traditional methods of producing silver-gelatin photographic prints to create Docu-movies, has opened up a wealth of exciting communication possibilities via the internet and Blu-Ray DVD. Use of large format cameras and the exploration of the Platinum & Palladium printing process linked to a personal interest in social and political issues, has enabled Cooper to create photographs with a greater degree of certainty in the mediums ability to transcend false social constructs of race, sense of belonging and identity.