Georgia Coxe

 The Nature of Provincetown Color Photographs



Photographer Georgia Coxe presents closely focused views of the flowers and fruits and vegetables she finds growing in the gardens, backyards and pathways of the town.  With strong color and fresh composition,  Coxe creates images of dramatic abstract patterns. Coming as close as she can to the subject opens a whole world of unseen form and contrast and color. Coxe adds long tubes to her lens, often getting so close she often comes away with pollen on her lens. 


Coxe is largely self-taught.  She made her first art photograph at twelve.  She was living in Indianapolis where her painter father was Director of the Herron Art Institute.  She had received a developing kit as a present and with her first contact print, she was hooked.  By 16, she set up her own darkroom when a neighbor passed his equipment to her.  She did all the photo work for school publications.  On her own, she studied everything she could find on photography. She sometimes sat in on classes at the Herron School, but it was not a time when women were encouraged to develop their creative interests outside the home.  Later she studied with Eugene Smith at Indiana University and attended the Philadelphia Museum School.  Coxe sites Life Magazine and Edward Steichen’s work as strong influences, and refers to the Family of Man exhibition of the mid-50’s as affirming her desire to give form to her experience through photography.  She married and raised three children.  The family had a summer cottage here in Provincetown, and in 1977, Coxe moved to town year round.  Because she had no darkroom here, she began to take color photographs. 


Thus, Coxe composes her images with the camera rather than by cropping in the darkroom. The twenty-five 8”x10” prints in this exhibit are made from the entire negative.  Using an old Pentax 35 mm and low-speed color film, Coxe creates images that bear a kinship to still life paintings -- a common, unnoticed daisy or a ripe tomato is elevated to an icon by her attentive eye.



May 2001




©2007 Rena Lindstrom All Rights Reserved