Temkin, Brad

Brad Temkin, Shokie IL, USA

Throughout his career, Chicago-based photographer Brad Temkin (American, b.1956) has been documenting the human impact on the landscape. He has exhibited his photographs in museums and galleries throughout the United States and abroad. Temkin’s works are included in numerous permanent collections, including those of The Art Institute of Chicago; Milwaukee Art Museum; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Akron Art Museum, Ohio; and Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, among others. His images have appeared in such publications as Aperture, Black & White Magazine, TIME Magazine and European Photography. A monograph of Mr. Temkin’s work was published in 2005 entitled “Private Places: Photographs of Chicago Gardens” (Chicago: Columbia College Chicago, Center for American Places, 2005). He teaches photography at Columbia College in Chicago, and has been a lecturer and visiting artist at numerous institutions in the United States.


When, therefore, a vital, devoted American photographer, Brad Temkin, comes to Ireland, travels through the country, meeting the people, chatting with them, keeping his eyes and ears open. What sort of Ireland do we expect him to come up with? Well, like all good artists, Temkin makes us question our own expectations. Or to put it another way, he substitutes surprise for predictability. His images startle us into a sense of the novelty of what we had taken for granted. He has his own way of seeing; and he remains true to that way, not stubbornly, not blindly, but with a conviction that he can make the centuries surrender some of their secrets, compel history to yield up images that might otherwise have gone unnoticed, and persuade ancient Ireland to reveal certain of it’s stunning treasures. Brad Temkin is, literally, a thief of time. He has picked time’s pocket with deft skill, even with a certain charm. The results, these pictures which become more riveting the more one considers them, are there for our delighted contemplation.

Contemplation and concentrated acts of attention are what Brad Temkin’s pictures unapologetically demand. Furthermore, until they receive that prolonged contemplation and those sustained acts of attention, they will not surrender their mesmeric secrets, their calm revelations of a life that often speaks of another, a more ancient time.


Aer Lingus
Akron Art Museum
Art Institute of Chicago
Bank Of America (LaSalle Bank collection)
Block Museum Of Art
Brennan Steel
Broad Art Museum, at Michigan State University
Center for Creative Photography
Continental Bank
Corcoran Gallery Of Art
Grateful Dead Archive, University Of California Santa Cruz
Ilford Photo
Krannert Art Museum, University Of Illinois
Milwaukee Art Museum
Museo de Arte Moderna – Rio de Janeiro
Portland Art Museum
Ruttenberg Art Foundation
Museum Of Contemporary Photography
Museum Of Fine Arts, Houston
Wright Gallery, Beloit College

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