In my art, I aim to blur the distinction between man-made and nature by combing recycled papers like newspaper, maps, tissue and sheet music with acrylic paint and other media to make paintings of the natural world. Each of my mixed media pieces are meant to be viewed on two levels. From across the room the finished image can be seen, but on closer inspection the many layers of hidden detail emerge. A simple rock becomes a map that reminds you of home. A flower petal is a sheet of music playing your favorite song. I create images of nature by recycling fragments of our modern disposable culture into the painting. On the surface my work is serene and peaceful, but the layers beneath show the chaos of our modern lives.
Artist Biography – Nicole Young Cochener
Nicole Young Cochener was born in 1980 in Wichita, Kansas. She is a mixed media artist who combines post-consumer materials and traditional fine art techniques to create her distinctive paintings. Her pieces combine layers of collaged paper, acrylic paint and other media to create representational images of the natural world, juxtaposing organic imagery and symbolism with our modern disposable culture.
From a young age, Nicole aspired to be an artist and began taking drawing and painting classes. She earned dual degrees in Art and Publications from Friends University and later studied Art Direction at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
Her artistic career began with creating graphics and video propaganda for the US Department of Defense. She also served as Creative Coordinator for the University of Kansas School of Medicine before opening her own business in San Francisco, Squishy Sushi, an eco-boutique featuring Nicole’s recycled jewelry and art. After a brief hiatus to start a family, Nicole moved to Las Vegas where she now creates her art full time.
Nicole’s work is included in private and corporate collections in over 20 countries worldwide. Her pieces have been featured by CNN, Marin Magazine, San Joaquin Magazine, Pregnancy and Newborn, Green Mom and more. She is an award winning artist and has won many distinctions including being named one of the 2019/2020 Art Pop billboard winners. Nicole currently owns her own gallery and working studio, Squishy Studio, located in the Las Vegas Arts District and has recently started Gallery to Go, a chain of upcycled vending machines featuring small artworks.