Harmonic Discord: Cityscapes by John Dowell

Telfair Academy September 23, 2011 - February 5, 2012

Houston Reflection

Exhibition Closed February 2012

Harmonic Discord: Cityscapes by John Dowell

Other pieces on view
September 23 – December 30, 2011 / Beach Institute
Opening Reception: Sunday, September 25, 3 p.m.
Beach Institute, 502 E. Harris Street, Savannah

John Dowell has spent much of the past decade enthralled by the architecture, lights, and reflections that compose America’s urban landscapes. Using a large-format camera, Dowell has captured countless images of cityscapes in locations such as New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, and his native Philadelphia. His compositions present crisply-focused views that call into question the nature of life in these buzzing urban centers, allowing the viewer to consider which aspect of the city is most real: the dazzling surfaces of the skyscrapers, the images shown on the buildings’ reflective façades, or the lives being lived out in the seemingly infinite number of offices and apartments stacked one on top of the other.


john dowell

This exhibition is organized by Telfair Museums in conjunction with the  Beach Institute, and will be on view at both venues simultaneously. The Beach Institute will feature views captured at twilight, when the fading sun creates complex effects of light, atmosphere, and reflection, while the installation at Telfair Museums’ Telfair Academy will include photographs taken in the dark of night. Together, the two installations will present a thorough overview of Dowell’s captivating images of the urban landscape.

John Dowell (b. 1941) is a professor of printmaking at the Tyler School of Art at Temple University. In addition to his active teaching career, Dowell has created and exhibited his own prints, paintings, and photographs for more than four decades. His work was included in the 35th Venice Biennale and the 1975 Whitney Biennial, and has been the subject of over 50 solo exhibitions at institutions such as the Corcoran Gallery of Art and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Dowell’s work can be found in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Fogg Museum at Harvard University; and the RISD Museum. Dowell has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including grants from the National Endowment of the Arts and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

Chicago River There is Light 2008


John Dowell (b. 1941);  Houston Reflection; Archival pigment print;  27 x 34 inches;  Courtesy of the artist

Bottom (L-R):

John Dowell (b. 1941);  Chicago River; Archival pigment print;  34 x 27 inches;  Courtesy of the artist

John Dowell (b. 1941);  There is Light, Atlanta, 2008;  Archival pigment print;  34 x 27 inches;  Courtesy of the artist