Jodi Cobb: Stranger in a Strange Land
Thursday, May 1, 2014, 11:15 AM
Building HSS, Room 165Photograph courtesy Viron
As a photojournalism student in the 60s, Cobb avidly recorded the counter-culture she was
immersed in, starting with some of rock & roll’s biggest names—Bruce Springsteen and Grace
Slick among them— at pivotal points in their careers. Her first documentary project covering a
commune in the Ozark hills garnered numerous awards, establishing her as a new young star of
the photographic world. In the mid-70s, Cobb left newspapers to join National GeographicMagazine
—its first female photographer in what was then very much a boys’ club. She would go
on to shoot some of the most pivotal stories in the magazine’s history, including the shocking
and poignant “21st Century Slavery,” exposing a wide range of human trafficking, child and
slave labor, and the sex trade.
Known for breaking through barriers and going undercover to reveal hidden societies, Cobb has
brought to light some of the first images ever published from these realms—fascinating
glimpses into Japan’s secret Geisha culture and the cloistered lives of Saudi Arabian women.
She has also covered lighter topics, capturing the singular experience of being a twin and
exploring what is considered “beautiful” around the world.
Featured as one of National Geographic’s Women of Vision in a forthcoming Fall 2013 book and
exhibition, Jodi Cobb takes audiences on a moving and humorous journey. Travel with her as
she chronicles her public—and private—path from young photojournalist to world-renowned photographer.