Recent Exhibitions Honor Life’s Work of Deans Emeriti
Harold Cohen, who as dean from 1974-1984 nearly doubled the school’s faculty and established its philanthropic base by forming the Friends of the School of Architecture and Planning, has spent the past 15 years launching a second career as an artist. Now 90, Cohen works from his studio in downtown Buffalo experimenting with material and techniques to create prints, paintings, woodcuts and sculptures.
Reflecting his training in the Bauhaus tradition of art and design at Chicago’s Institute of Design, Cohen’s work also draws from his Jewish faith and life experiences that range from the murder of his extended family during the Holocaust to traveling through South America with his wife, Mary, to collect insects. The recent exhibition of Cohen’s work at Buffalo’s Manuel Barreto Gallery included a pair of prints with haunting, ghostly images of burning bodies in the concentration camps of Auschwitz-Birkenau and Stutthof. His “Blood Brothers” woodcut of a swastika, hammer and sickle is a statement against authoritarian government. Others are more abstract, such as “In Space,” an intaglio print that was recently selected to appear in “Art Olympia,” a prestigious international exhibition in Tokyo.