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Artist Statement

The impact of our climate crisis on mental health has led many to overwhelm and burnout, frozen in a moment when action is essential. My work honors the complex emotions brought on by our climate crisis, aiming to create a pathway toward connection, understanding, and action. 

My life-sized figurative oil paintings use energetic brushwork, vibrant colors, and the human form to explore humanity as an interconnected, evolving force.  My “feeling bodies” reflect intense emotional experiences—anxiety, fear, depression, but also intuition, strength, love—that become vividly-colored manifestations of the life force inside the flesh and blood body. These paintings evoke the inner change necessary to adapt to our changing world. I visually break down the body to reveal the spark of life—from the interweaving of body systems that sustain a single person’s life to the connections between individuals across generations. We are biologically woven into our time and place in the contemporary world. The action or inaction we take today ripples forward affecting the future. 

I believe that investigating our far-reaching emotional and biological connections with one another and our living Earth can help us recognize our agency to influence a better future for generations to come. 


Nicole Cooper. Change of Heart, oil on canvas, 40 x 30 inches, 2020.

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