Arts

Martha Cooper’s Iconic Photography Of Graffiti Opens New Atlanta Gallery

Photographer Martha Cooper began following graffiti artists in New York City in the late 1970s. 
Photographer Martha Cooper began following graffiti artists in New York City in the late 1970s. 
Credit Courtesy of Martha Cooper

Graffiti has become a global artform, and photographer Martha Cooper has been documenting it and the people behind the spray cans for decades.

She has a solo exhibit at a new gallery in town founded by sneaker and street wear boutique Wish ATL. The director of public art festival Living Walls Monica Campana is the official curator for the space.

Cooper began following graffiti artists in New York City in the late 1970s.

“I didn’t look at graffiti and say this is great art and I love it,” said Cooper in an interview with Lois Reitzes. “But I loved the idea of a culture of young artists who were risking their lives basically … for their art. And they had a set of aesthetics that only they understood.”

The exhibition is called “Then and Now” and opens with a party tomorrow evening at 8 p.m. at The Gallery by Wish ATL. Cooper gives an artist talk there on Sunday at 4 p.m.