In the seven essays in Knowing and Seeing: Refl ections on Fifty Years of Drawing Cities, Cooper reveals the techniques and philosophy underpinning his approach. Cooper teaches drawing at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture, where he studied in the 1960s. Initially bound for architecture, he veered into illustration following a paradoxical class assignment in 1965. The sculptor Kent Bloomer told his students to make a drawing showing both the inside of their studio and the space outside it as well.
Radium City tells the story of two brothers, James J. and Joseph M. Flannery, undertakers-turned-industrialists who twice succeeded in making once-rare metals, vanadium and radium, in commercially available quantities.