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Justin Cooper-Archetypes

August 4, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - September 24, 2023 @ 3:00 pm

“In 2015 — after over a decade of painting and art making — I asked myself what brought me to want to create in the first place. Thinking back to my childhood, it was probably directly linked to enjoying playing with plastic blocks and how excited I was to get my hands on a grid-lined sketchbook. I would design my own toys and sketch out the floor plans for houses, cars and symmetrical objects.
As I looked back, I started to remember what I loved about the creative process. And I used that reflection as a direct influence on a new approach to my work. I applied this to, at first, designing objects and components to paintings that could be replicated, multiplied, and combined to eventually create an environment or larger narrative pieces. I spent the first few years of this process building up a catalog of shapes. I’ve always been drawn to plants and wildlife. So I started designing single lily pads, flowers and animals that could later be placed into different contexts. I approached the planning of these individual components like I would an isometric architectural diagram. The geometric abstraction was also influenced by the ever increasing construction of blocklike buildings in my neighborhood — as well as all of the digital media that was and is still expanding. The paintings are a direct reflection of the urbanization and technology that is growing around us.
Acknowledging my own arrogance in the interpretation and redesigning of natural forms, this series is a reflection of a larger trend of attempting to bend nature to our will rather than being inspired by its lead and flowing within it. I created these works with the hope that humans can look more to nature for inspiration and shift our viewpoint of our role within it to correct our disruptive path.” –Justin Cooper
About Justin Cooper
Cooper is an Indianapolis native who has worked as an artist here for over 20 years. He spent most of that time as a studio artist. Central to Cooper’s artistic evolution has been independently developing my artistic voice while forming relationships with artists he connected with while maintaining studios at the Murphy Art Center, Wheeler Arts Community, and as an artist in Big Car’s Artist and Public Life Residency program.
In the studio, he concentrates on creating multiple series that will eventually go together and be displayed as cohesive bodies of work. “I’ve always enjoyed learning new mediums and techniques to incorporate into pieces in hopes of expanding my visual language,” Cooper says. In recent years his interest has increased in creating larger-scale mural projects and public art. “Experimenting with the scale and design of an image while being thoughtful of how the piece will be viewed from different distances has been intriguing to me. The consideration of placement and the context of the image as it relates to its surrounding environment has been an interesting challenge,” he adds.
This exhibit is made possible by The Ruth Foundation for the Arts, The Arts Council of Indianapolis, The City of Indianapolis and Allen Whitehill Clowes Foundation.
Main Gallery
Tube Factory art space
Wednesday -Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tube is also open until 10 p.m. each First Friday.
Closed Holidays


August 4, 2023 @ 6:00 pm
September 24, 2023 @ 3:00 pm


Tube Factory artspace
1125 Cruft St.
Indianapolis, IN 46203 United States
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