CoCA Blog

September's CoCA Star: Trina Cooper

Posted by caroline on August 31, 2016

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Image: from Trina Cooper's CoCA Lab Artist Residency in March, 2016. Cooper explains her Breathing Machine installation to visitors.

For our September CoCA Star feature, we are very happy to share the work of Seattle artist Trina Cooper. Trina inspires us with her creative, informative, and interactive works, as well as her generous support of the Seattle art community. She is a participating CoCA artist and also one of our most dedicated volunteers, and has spent countless hours helping the CoCA team with a range of projects from art installation, event management, and gallery sitting. We don't know what we'd do without her! 

Trina Cooper recently participated as a CoCA Lab Artist in Residence at CoCA UN[contained], where she built an interactive environmental video installation called The Breathing Machine. The Breathing Machine was an interactive environmental video installation which included a set of lungs which breathed, had a video constructed of footage of re-contextualized dendrite structures projected onto them. Dendrite structures occur throughout nature as a part of the mechanical infrastructure that keeps the environment and all of the creatures functioning in a healthy manner. There was also an interactive component of a breath horn to the installation, which when blown would create animated breath across the video imagery and lungs.

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Diagram from Trina Cooper's interactive multi-media installation, Breathing Machine from March 2016.

Trina is currently working on a piece which is derivative of The Breathing Machine installation. The new piece she is working on is an interactive environmental video installation which consists of a set of lungs the participants enter into. The lungs again breath and they are akin to a jumpy castle play structure, like the ones people use at birthday parties. The giant lungs have the interactive animation triggered by breath of the participants, projected through them, over the re-contextualized dendrite video footage. This series of installations seeks to draw awareness to the inter-connectedness and fragile balance of all components in nature, including humans.

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In-process plans for Trina Cooper's Giant Inflated Lung Interactive Video Installation

Trina's work explores the forces of nature that are intrinsic in humans and their relationship to the environments they inhabit. She explores these elements from both a physical and a spiritual orientation. Many of the forms and visual phenomena she explores in her work are derived from the human form and other forms or systems and phenomena occurring in nature. The content or concepts explored in the works are also derived from concepts of humans as organisms in nature and the human psychological response to existing as sentient beings in relation to their environments and communities.

Thank you Trina, for being an integral part of the CoCA community. We can't wait to see the final outcome of your inflated lung interactive installation!

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