Grand Tetons, Driggs Idaho
Kevin Cooley
Schwartz Art Collection, Harvard Business School
Schwartz Art Collection, Harvard Business School
Schwartz Art Collection, Harvard Business School

Return to Nature has always been a distress signal of mankind, signifying the need to take care of ourselves and to get back to basics. Be it the classical or neoclassical Arcadia, Jean Jacques Rousseau's return to our primitive being, William Wordsworth or Samuel Coleridge's search for solitude, or Caspar David Friedrich's discovery of landscape as the representation of God, Nature has always been our mother and one of our ultimate refuges.

Cooley's photographs plunge directly into this Romantic tradition of landscape, and he enriches it with contemporary concerns. Nature is the muse, and man is the explorer. Breathtaking night views of American landscapes are illuminated by eerie distress signals, possibly messages coming from above or vice-versa. Light shooting through the sky highlights an endangered beauty and at the same time represents a divine or extraterrestrial phenomenon.

Taking photographs, for Cooley, is a lonely job, infused with silence and meditation. This contemplative mood, along with a sense of wonder and fear, permeates the entire body of work. — Massimo Audiello


About the collection

Gerald Schwartz believes the presence of provocative art promotes creative thinking, remembering that "artistic presence was the only thing missing at HBS when I went there. I wanted to change that." In 1995, Gerry Schwartz and a team from HBS together began purchasing contemporary art for the HBS buildings most frequented by students. Inspired by the growing collection, a small group of MBA students founded the HBS Art Appreciation Society in 2001. It quickly grew into one of the largest student clubs on campus, sponsoring events in Boston area galleries and museums, as well as an annual weekend in Manhattan to meet artists, tour exhibitions, and attend theater. The club's co-presidents accompany Mr. Schwartz on his annual buying trip to purchase additional art for the School's collection.

About Gerald Schwartz, MBA '70

Gerald Schwartz, MBA ’70, is the Founder and CEO of Onex Corporation. He has been appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada and inducted into the Canadian Business Hall of Fame. Gerry Schwartz is Vice Chairman and member of the Executive Committee of Mount Sinai Hospital, a director of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, a trustee of The Simon Wiesenthal Center and Chairman of its Canadian Friends, and a governor of Junior Achievement of Metro Toronto. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Manitoba, a Masters in Business Administration degree from Harvard Business School, and several Doctor of Laws (Hon.) degrees. He lives in Toronto with his wife, Heather Reisman, founder and CEO of Indigo Books and Music.