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An image of Coogee II 1983-84 by Mark Johnson

Mark Johnson

(Australia, England 06 Jan 1946 – )

Coogee II 1983-84, from the series Sydney Beaches
Media category
Materials used
gelatin silver photograph

40.7 x 50.7 cm image; 50.6 x 60.6 cm sheet

Signature & date
Signed and dated l.c. verso, pencil, "...1983-84/ MARK JOHNSON".
Gift of the artist 1993
Accession number
© Mark Johnson
Not on display
Further information

Mark Johnson's practice spans both an informal documentary style and a more formalised aesthetic that arranges individual images within typological series. After graduating in medicine from the University of Sydney in 1970, Johnson later studied in London and became interested in photography. He held his first solo exhibition in 1978 at the Australian Centre for Photography. Johnson focused his camera lens on Sydney's beaches and buildings - from Coogee to Glebe and beyond - to systematically document various locations around the harbour and the city. The 'Sydney Beaches' series includes 17 photographs and the 'Sydney Buildings' series includes 24 photographs. Each beach image features a band of sky, a foreshore building and bathers strewn across white sand. By producing each image in black and white and repeating various compositional elements, Johnson asks the viewer to look beyond the obvious, to discover differences among similarities.

Bibliography (2)

Sandra Byron, City by the Sea, Sydney, 1993. 61

Jorge Calado, À Prova de Água Waterproof, Lisbon, 1998, illus.. plate no. 163

Exhibition history (2)

City by the Sea: Mark Johnson's Sydney photographs, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 21 Sep 1993–07 Nov 1993

Waterproof - One Hundred Days Festival - Expo 98, Lisboa EXPO 98, Lisbon, 27 Feb 1998–31 May 1998