Nigel Cooke

On the Composstibility of Painting – Suhail Malik
How many worlds are there? Nigel Cooke's paintings pose this question with an insistence that's hard to ignore. It's certainly not the only question, pleasure, or thought to be had from these paintings but in each piece and across what we have of Cooke's work to date the unity and integrity – the unicity - of the world is again and again put to task. The world we're talking about here is that of the painting, what is happening across the picture plane, and also the world of the viewer, the world as you understand it since encountering these paintings. Already, then, we're speaking about two worlds. But this alteration to the integrity of the world as you thought you knew it is a just a general condition of any encounter that you need to come to understand: you see that there is another world or, at least, a world that isn't yours – yet. Cooke's paintings elaborate and exploit this general condition of strangeness or foreignness with their own singularity and demand for eve
The Information – Darian Leader
“The thing I love about painting”, says Nigel Cooke, “is that it shows me I am in exactly the same place”. But what kind of place could this be? Is Cooke referring to the magical, disturbing spaces conjured up by his paintings? Or, alternatively, to some kind of continuity in his own artistic trajectory? It might seem obvious that there is a difference between the places that Cooke paints and the place that he paints them from. But why should we have to assume that they are distinct? And what would it mean for them to be one and the same? The places that Cooke paints would be difficult to find on a map. Most of them could never exist empirically. We see ruins and severed heads next to fruit and veg howling with pain, surrounded by graffiti and foliage. Vast suns and human brains smoke cigarettes, and strange recurrent singularities like lightbulbs, cords and wires appear with no apparent use or meaning. This is not even a concatenation of objects with a single
In Conversation with Ingvild and Stephan Goetz
Ingvild Goetz has been collecting art for 40 years and organises a rigorous programne of international exhibitions and publications at Samnlung Goetz, Munich, a museum dedicated to sharing her impressive collection of contemporary art with the public. Stephan Goetz has been collecting art for 4 years and specialises in Chinese art. As part of an ongoing dialogue, Ingvild and Stephan met with the artist in his London studio to discuss the works nearing completion for his forthcoming show at Stuart Shave/ Modern Art, London. Ingvild: The main image in 'The Dead' (2005), what looks like a collection of sick or unhappy vegetables on a tabletop, is even more precise than the other ones in this group of works, because in the other ones you always get lost in the many details around the main image. The background image now seems more concrete, more dominant. Nigel: It's the first one that's been pared down to something close to a straight image. There's a clarity between background and foreg