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Helen Maurene Cooper

Philadelphia, PA

I am multidisciplinary social practice based artist who uses photography as my primary form of communication. I has earned a BA from Bard College and an MFA from School of the Art Institute Chicago. I taught across Chicagoland for 11 years and now live in Philadelphia with my spouse and cat.  Currently, I am a Visiting Assistant Professor of Photography at Kutztown University. 

Through my work I engage in multiple image making strategies (ranging from immersive photo-based wallpaper installation to historic studio collodion portraiture) to facilitate a critical exploration at the intersection of feminism, entrepreneurship, economics, fashion, and intimacy. 

Since 2008, my work has explored the rich fabric of beauty- centered communities in Chicago. In 2017 Onomatopee, Eindhoven Netherlands published her first monograph, Paint & Polish: Visual Economy & Visual Culture from the West Side, which has been reviewed in Bust.com, New City, Nails Magazine and Vice Magazine. My projects have recently been supported by DCASE Chicago, The Cultural Counsel of Eindhoven, faculty research grant at Lake Forest College and a travel grant from Kutztown University.