Cotton.  Photographs by Mark Cohen.
Cotton.  booktease preview.


Photographs by Mark Cohen.
Super Labo, 2021. 80 pp., 69 black-and-white illustrations, 6¾x9¾".

Publisher's Description

First, I took a picture of the gas station seen from the window of the first car and started the trip. In July 1991, I spent eight days driving a narrow road from Atlanta, Georgia to Memphis, Tennessee, with some stops. When I got to big cities like Jackson, Birmingham and Montgomery, I parked with a parking meter and walked around a few blocks. I didn't intend to make a book, I just wanted to take a picture.

Thirty years later, after the recent previous administration exposed its extreme political incompetence, I looked back at this group of photographs and thought it subtly portrayed three aspects of the southern United States-blacks, whites, and Infrastructure at that time. Cultivation of cotton has been a key industry that has driven the economy from early on, and it is the slaves who have expanded and guaranteed their profits.

COTTON is a photobook. However, the background includes political and social stories; I stopped by a small black church and used two congregants to emphasize religious dominance and strong women. I saw the traces of industry in many small cardboard boxes rather than in many hectares of cotton fields. The last picture, of the five boys sitting on the bench, seems to symbolize the isolated leisure that occurs in the region. The camera is, so to speak, an unconscious Lithomas test.

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