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University of Iowa News Release

Release: Feb. 21, 2003

Sculptor Barbara Cooper Will Discuss Her Work March 3

Sculptor Barbara Cooper will give a free public lecture on her work at 8 p.m. Monday, March 3, in Room E109 of the University of Iowa Art Building.

Cooper, who teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Harper College in Palatine, Ill., will be visiting the UI campus as a guest of the School of Art and Art History.

In her works Cooper uses common building materials, including wood glue and strips of wood veneer, to create organic shapes that seem frozen in the act of growing and expanding. Most easily compared to plant life, especially trees, her large sculptures echo the growth and evolution of flora.

She sometimes uses the scarred and twisted trunks of trees to represent the persistence and tenacity of life. Her recycling of tree-derived materials to create what are essentially new trees is also intended as a wry comment on the natural's world constant scavenging through re-growth.

Cooper's work's have been shown in the Chicago area at the Chicago Cultural Center, Museum of Contemporary Art, Fassbender Gallery, Dart, Artemisia, the Evanston Art Center and the Hyde Park Art Center, as well as the Sybaris Gallery in Detroit and Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art in Kansas City.

She has received two Illinois Arts Council Fellowships, an Arts Midwest/NEA Regional Visual Arts Fellowship, a Museum of Contemporary Art Purchase Award, as well as residency fellowships at Yaddo, MacDowell Colony, Ragdale Foundation, Blue Mountain Center and the Camargo Foundation in France.

The School of Art and Art History is part of the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

For information on UI arts events, visit on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Art and Art History web site at To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <>.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072,