Archive for the Uncategorized Category


Posted in Uncategorized on June 6, 2015 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols

I want to thank all of my readers of this blog over the last few years. I am moving it over to Tumblr now, which is visually more appealing to me and allows for more interesting community.

I appreciate my subscribers for their support.

Please come join me at:

Also, my new art and writing website is up!

Thank you!



Weave Points: Elation, Explosion and Expansion

Posted in Uncategorized on March 19, 2015 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols

IMG_9484-1021x1024I am currently absorbed in a piece about the unchanging elements that make up the perpetual cycle of relationship: elation, explosion and expansion. I love poking holes in the cardboard. I realize that I am poking holes that may not be filled with yarn but may allow the viewer to see a little bit of light coming from the backside. Some holes may be filled with string, little flimsy bits. The idea is to show matter exploding from intense emotion—the intense emotion that disturbs an assumed or familiar calm that stems from the original bliss point of a new relationship. The first time this happens, it is devastating. But as the cycle repeats in relationship eternally, one understands that explosions are necessary to jostle the matter and that new matter eventually forms and that this trinity is necessary to keep a relationship growing and fresh—non static. My studio work takes place in my domestic setting, squeezed in among life with my partner. There is something in that—something about being a woman and the traditional roles of women, where we have to shove things in between other things to get them done. I am not necessarily in a traditional role as a female or an artist. I am not domestic. I work in a small-contained office or sprawled around the house. My life is my studio. I also like working on the couch with my thimble as if in matron mode darning a sock. This Betsy-Ross metaphor is new to me but I realize that much of what I am doing now is trying to express emotion and the human condition by patch-working together the raw materials that are available to me within the current limitations of my life: cardboard that is readily available from household purchases, yarn and sewing tools, fabrics that I have compiled that represent color, bits of built up paint from palette bowls—accessible items that stem from my need to create while fiscally lean and my desire to use primal, rudimentary, naïve elements in conjunction with my self-schooled voice. Ironic that I am going backwards into found substances and cast offs as I grow sophisticated in my concepts. There is no competition for resources but only the opportunities to give birth to ideas.

Small World

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on April 30, 2013 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols

Small World

My world used to be big and large and contained hardly enough space for me. Today it is honed like a smartly sharp pinpoint where specks dance from things only accessed by deep looking. Like when wood is rent by bench saw to reveal the marvelous last supper of termites within. Material bleached white by the intrusion of predators – the shock noticeable on the skin carrying fantastic new whorls. Disease to one begets the evolution that occurs from dis-ease to another. What was once a fence post now delivers a pattern to an artist – a juxtaposition of young and golden thriving beauty next to a ransacked body – poignant and flayed for new truthful undertakings and a second life as something strikingly beautiful.

Those Who Profoundly Touch

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on March 22, 2013 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols


In the very early 2000s while I was struggling with my own identity as an artist I met a man who deeply touched my soul. My struggles were based on the fact that most of my work up until that point had been directly autobiographical – a process that was largely cathartic but that had propelled me to a new place of healing where I no longer needed to so deeply examine my individual experience. In this healing space, I became largely haunted by the disconnection of human beings from each other in the world, separated by divergent politics and ideologies with no readily accessible platform for conscious dialogue and debate with each other under the auspices of leadership, administration and the media. I was longing for emotional connection with my peers in other countries, convinced that the majority of them felt the same.

I met Ayad Alkadhi through a gallery we both showed our work at and learned he was originally from Iraq. His paintings at the time were large textural articulations with Arabic markings revealing an ancient poetic past that the artist still longed for beneath his home country’s explosive contemporary identity. We bonded over our common hunger for expression and I spent a few enjoyable afternoons in his small apartment that doubled as a studio while we discussed our global dynamics over bran muffins and tea.


Over the course of the next decade, I watched with glee as his career exploded and took him back to New York City where he remains today, perpetually evolving his creative process. He continues to create amazingly poignant work in a world where the constant flux of political, economic and social change continues to inspire his profoundly personal yet universal paintings.

Read my interview with Ayad in this month’s Newtopia Magazine.

Postcards from the Past, Present and Future

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on February 20, 2013 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols


I was 14 the first time I left a random note in an airplane seat; this time for the elegant forty-year-old blonde who had vacated it for the restroom. I had been eying her the entire ride so far as she was so different than I who had been visiting my father in the humid Midwest and was now returning home to the hot desert for another molasses slow school year that I could not wait to escape from. I wished to be like the blonde – older, free and dressed in the same kind of beige on beige clothes that were made out of linen and hemp and so popular that year. I wrote a simple sentence to her about how classy she was and how much I wished I could be like her someday without any inky clue as to who I, the writer, might be. I didn’t watch as she came back to sit down but I knew she had to have seen it and it gave me a little sense of joy back then to know I had possibly put a smile on someone’s face that day.

This trait of wanting to randomly reach out and touch people has continued throughout my life. It has exponentially increased as my aging has coincided with the technological revolutions of the text message, email missive and Internet social networking machine. It’s so easy to take rich and whimsical communication for granted these days as we flitter on the periphery of dialogue and depth abetted by new tools, which allow us to blurt out one liners at any time in any medium we wish. The pensive musing, poetic note, and hand mailed letter have all but become obsolete – old-fashioned pieces of nostalgia and yellowing lined paper.  This coupled with the fact that I am a little perturbed that our memories of each other in person are being supplemented a million pixels a minute by the Facebook photo stream and Instagram hand to hand documentary weapon has inspired me to start a new project.


My daughter bought me a box of postcards a few Christmases back filled with every Vintage book cover ever published by Penguin Books. I discovered them in a dusty box recently and was overjoyed to realize that every one I chose almost automatically reminded me of someone I knew the instant I looked at the title and illustration. So I have embarked upon another project in which I get to surprise others – one in which I draw an image or write a snippet of a poem that represents a memory I have with another person inspired by the particular book cover on the postcard and then I send it to them without signing my name.  It doesn’t matter if they never realize who mailed them this card. It doesn’t matter if they even recall the moment I am alluding to with my markings. All that matters is that a piece of them has been jogged from my stony brain’s bank and that my re-introduction of this piece of them to themselves on an otherwise ordinary afternoon will hopefully delight them on their jaunt back inside from the mailbox.

Penelope Gottlieb and Her Portraits of Extinction

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on October 17, 2012 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols

One of the living painters I admire the most is Santa Barbara-based Penelope Gottlieb. She is half conceptual artist and half prolific draftsperson and painter. After spending time with her a decade ago, we completely lost touch and then we synchronistically ran into each other at The Hammer recently. I took the opportunity through our reconnect to interview her for my magazine Newtopia’s one year anniversary issue that launched this week.

Her portraits of extinct species of botanicals are what always enthralled me about her work. She discovered a world of forgotten plants and flowers while reading through old botanical records and painstakingly imagined their every part and petal and reconstituted them onto canvas, breathing lives into them once again and presenting a visual record of something that is no longer. For more on these, please enjoy the article. I find the paintings stunning and the meaning behind them seriously profound and touching.

Naked in Front of Strangers

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on October 8, 2012 by Kimberly Cooper Nichols

I am excited to announce my new column for 3 AM Magazine. I spent my early twenties writing a monthly column for 3 AM called Diary of a Californicator and now I am back a little older, a little wiser, but still Naked in Front of Strangers to pen another monthly poetry project. It’s good to be back embroiled in my French punk rock literary roots with Andrew Gallix and the gang.