Skip to Content

Brad Temkin (USA)


Rooftop draws attention to an important new movement to counter the heat island effect caused by city life,its structures, and waste heat. Green roofs reduce our carbon footprint and improve storm water control, but in a poetic sense they do far more. They reflect the conflict at the heart of our existence as city dwellers, symbolizing our concern for nature in the face of continuing urban sprawl. By securely situating gardens within the steel, stone,and glass rectangularity of urban and industrial buildings, we reinterpret the idea of grounds. In these photographs, I ask viewers to revel in the sites’ open patterns, colors, and connections to the sky, and to see how the rooftops become part of a new landscape. These pictures celebrate and promulgate new ideas in sustainability design, showing the inventiveness in architecture while accommodating our need for nature.

In spite of our folly, we find grace. I am an optimist.

Brad Temkin


Born in 1956, American artist Brad Temkin is perhaps best known for his photographs of contemporary landscape. His work is held in numerous permanent collections, including those of the Art Institute of Chicago; Milwaukee Art Museum; Corcoran Gallery of Art,Washington, D.C.; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Akron Art Museum,Ohio; and Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, among others. His images have appeared in such publications as Aperture,Black & White magazine, TIME, and European Photography. Other published work includes the monograph Private Places: Photographs of Chicago Gardens (Chicago: Center for American Places, 2005) and ROOFTOP (Santa Fe: Radius Books, 2015). He has been an adjunct professor at Columbia College Chicago since 1984.

Back to top