Cooper & Gorfer comprises the artists Sarah Cooper (US, 1974) and Nina Gorfer (Austria, 1979). Based on the stories and lives of the women they meet and collaborated with, Cooper & Gorfer explore issues of memory, migration, dislocation, and the malleability of identity.
The artist duo are known for their distinct hybrid portraits. Their photo-based collages are anchored in an anthropological research of people and place. Sarah Cooper and Nina Gorfer reimagine the tradition of portraiture by visually examining and deconstructing the narrative of those they portray. Like art history’s Mannerists and Surrealists, Cooper & Gorfer strain observable reality through a complex psychological filter of memories, moods and wounds.
Cooper & Gorfer began their collaboration in 2006. They live and work in Gothenburg, Sweden. Their artwork has been widely exhibited at highly acclaimed museum venues and institutions including: Hasselblad Center, Kulturhuset Stockholm, Museum Angewandte Kunst Frankfurt, The National Museum of Photography Copenhagen and Fotografiska, amongst others. Cooper & Gorfer’s work is included in several private and museum collections, including the National Gallery of Iceland. They have been awarded the German Photo Book Award 2018 for their book I Know Not These My Hands (2017 Kehrer Verlag). Cooper & Gorfer are Hasselblad Ambassadors.
“We share a deeply rooted interest in the female story and how our experiences and socio-cultural background influence our sense of self. Our work strives to articulate the unapparent and the hidden desires we hold dear, paying tribute to the many layers of life and memories that shape us.”