“Light is the key player in my works and has a unique effect on each of them. Although I paint cities, light is my subject. It gives me the opportunity to expand and extend my limits to different places and themes, painting the main elements of the urban landscape: the invisible ones that change the face of things”.
Coming from a background in architecture, Ziv Cooper is influenced by the forms and rational structure of urban landscapes. Rather than recreate the iconic scenes and familiar tableaux however, he seeks out the hidden spaces and facades of the city reflected in the rain, or illuminated by sunlight or streetlamps. The combination of surfaces, materials and geometric compositions, as well as the relationship between light and its reflections, are his main sources of inspiration.
Working almost exclusively in oils, Ziv attacks each canvas with bold, rapid strokes, first with palette knives and then with brushes. Depending on the time of day, the weather conditions, or sometimes simply his mood, his palette may feature peaceful greys, intense blacks and blues, or bright gusts of pink, yellow and orange. The colours he uses reflect not only the scene, but also his own emotional state making each work deeply personal.
Ziv has developed his unique creative process over many years. He employs the historically proven technique of overlapping layers of colour, and with fast and vigorous brushstrokes he suggests the idea of reverberation. One scene may bask in the diffused glow of a warm sunset, while another may feature a gloomy metropolitan day where the rain becomes a mirror by multiplying the light rays. He applies the transparent colours ‘wet on wet’, creating a mesmerising combination of the luminous and the obscure which bring a unique richness to the view.
Ziv was born in Israel where he still lives and works. He travels extensively to increase his knowledge of the world, to discover unique themes and subjects, and most of all, to overcome his creative limitations. Each breath taking image captures one moment in the life of a city and brims with authenticity, intensity and personality. Since making an impact in the United States, his work has garnered considerable acclaim in locations all around the world.