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Nigel Cooke

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Nigel Cooke was born in Mirfield, West Yorkshire and has art running through his veins. Nigel joined the Merchant Navy after leaving school and subsequently has held a number of jobs on the road to becoming a full-time artist.

These included joining Butlins as their resident caricaturist and entertainer. He later went on to open caricature concessions on Blackpool's Central Pier and Pleasure Beach, in the Trafford Centre Mall in Manchester, and at Alton Towers. He has also worked as a character designer for the Hong Kong based C.I.M International and remains a member of the National Caricature Network in the USA.

Nigel Cooke’s paintings depict carnivalesque figures set within harsh landscapes that are littered with urban decay. The paintings imply a strong sense of foreboding both through the depicted forms such as skulls and derelict buildings and also through his use of colour which often features bilious toxic greens.

The paintings develop and change over a protracted period of time and are built up though many layers of oil paint. Nigel Cooke's paintings often balance different languages of paint within the same canvas.

Vast areas of colour are combined with obsessively detailed figuration and in recent works Nigel Cooke has incorporated large sweeping gestural marks into his compositions.