Susan Cooper

Maintaining perspective in a vast and complicated world is my fascination in public works and gallery art. Our place in time and place in life are perpetually changing, producing more combinations of understanding and an ever enlarging vision of the world.

Having artwork in Uruguay through the Art in Embassies program was meaningful in that way. I made it a point to see the work installed at the home of Ambassador Martin Silverstein and his wife, Audrey in Montevideo. This gave me the opportunity of see fascinating and excellent modern and contemporary art of that region that made a huge and lasting impression.

The best benefit of public art is learning about new areas and enlarging my perspective of the world. Public art addresses the nature of the site and its surroundings; this includes the purpose of the facility as well as its physical nature, and natural setting. In my studio work I concentrate on how I see the world privately. How time, and place in life changes my view is apparent in my work over the last 40 years.

Painting is my training but my art is almost always very high relief and free form sculpture in a variety of materials. I work in all formats, sizes, media, in both public and private arenas. Commissioned work is at the City and County Building in Denver where two 14 feet by 7 feet by 8 inches high relief murals flank the Rotunda. For four years I was on a design team for RTD, Regional Transportation District. I designed enhancements for 13 stations over 20 miles. My largest contribution was designing over forty windscreens, each in unique colors and patterns. A 100 foot wall sculpture recreating facades of synagogues that were destroyed during WWII is at the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust. Lucy R. Lippard wrote the catalogue essay for the synagogue project that was underwritten by the Gonda Foundation. My work has also appeared in ARTFORUM, Los Angeles Times, and quite often in Denver Newspapers.

Los Angeles is my original home. My art education began at California State University at Northridge and continued at University of California at Berkeley, where I earned BA and MA degrees. After two years in New Mexico where I had a painting grant and a painting commission, I settled Denver where I raised two children while I continued my artwork and occasionally taught art and colleges and universities. I now live outside of Denver on a couple of quiet acres that I share with my husband and occasional wildlife visitors. My studio is a former horse barn. I live and love to work and the hours in the studio are almost always intellectually challenging and too terribly short.

Many of my public works are in universities, parks, hospitals, and various other locations in California, Colorado, Nebraska, Mexico, and Missouri. Other installations are at the Denver Art Museum, Kirkland Museum, Roswell Museum, and Anderson Museum of contemporary Art in New Mexico.

Preferred media are bronze, plastic, LED lighting, glass, steel, wood, oil paint and combinations of the above. I am often curious about the way media changes the facts of objects and their significance. For example, a series of works on the cycles of life began as prints, became wall sculptures, then plastic, and currently bronze. This reflects my continued fascination with how time and place alter the perspective on the same phenomena. A person is the same in nature while time and place changes that outward perspective and inner perception. The studio work often addresses evolution and the nature of art making itself.

As an artist I have the honor of constantly reflecting the continually changing, perplexing, and marvelous world that we all occupy.

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