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2021 BFA Senior Interview: Addison Cooper

Image of a room with an abstracted figure on the floor, and a cheetah sideways on a green wallCheetahs, 12 x 9, Chalk Pastel.
Cheetahs, 12 x 9, Chalk Pastel.

Addison Cooper (he/him):

Addison Cooper is a BFA graduate from The College of New Jersey. Working primarily in the traditional medium, he dissects personal life experiences and incorporates the commanding elements into his work. Exploring symbolism has been crucial for Addison’s aim of expressing emotion without letting the viewer directly into his space. The result, however cryptic, hopefully creates an atmosphere of both mystery and intrigue.

Addison stated,“I’d say my artwork in general is a reflection on ideas and experiences I’ve had that stick with me – specifically those that involve my interactions with other people. I like to go back and replay these scenarios in my mind until I can pull it apart in a way that makes sense to me. I like to wait until the very last possible moment to complete my work – at that point I’ll make sure I’m locked in / confined to a small space where I stay until my work is done. My plans are to continue creating art, to pursue gallery exhibitions, and to work on commissions consistently. I’d like to retire soon, ideally.”

His series of pastel works, #1-8 is a close examination of experiences in his life that have affected him in ways that continue to resonate with him to this day. Using pastels in these studies has allowed Cooper to rapidly work and rework his ideas until he was able to successfully capture the emotions which these experiences are tied to. Cooper’s intention for this series was to ultimately develop a cohesive grouping of work where each element can provide individual narratives, while simultaneously acting as a part of the whole. This can be seen with the repetitious imagery in each piece, which also acts as a representation of these recurring thoughts and experiences.