Nathan Cohen
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With the completion of each piece it is, Cohen says, as if he is ‘seeing the piece for the first time, in the same way a viewer may encounter the work’.

Naturally, the process of creating these works is informed by the experience gained from the making of previous pieces. Cohen views his art within an international context and there are many sources which he looks to for inspiration. These include art and artefacts from many cultures, with the painted Pueblo Pottery and weaving of the Native American South West, Shoowa textiles and the art and architecture of Japan to name but a few of the sources which have informed his work over the years. To understand these associations it is necessary to consider the nature of abstract visual creation, for in these diverse sources lay the comprehension that a synthesis of the experiences gained from what we see can be manifest in forms that appear to be shared, with abstract affirmations of these experiences to be found in art and artefacts world wide.

Cohen’s work also explores the relationship between two and three-dimensions; he makes artworks which while pictorial also have a real depth. This allows for light to become a physical part of a work’s construction, enabling a piece to exist within both the illusionary pictorial space and the real space of the viewer. The linear constructions of the mid-1980’s developed this theme, exploring ideas of how to define an edge or boundary to a work, both in relation to itself and the architecture within which it exists. This developed in forms examining the vertical and the horizontal, the external and the internal, with the non-hierarchical structure of the square predominating. The sense of a journey both around and through a work is revealed through the linear elements composing each piece.

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Nathan Cohen Nanzenji 2004