Coop is Nashville’s longest established, artist-run project space and curatorial collective, established in 2010.
Alejandro T. Acierto
Alejandro T. Acierto is an artist and musician whose work is largely informed by the breath, the voice, and the processes that enable them. He is the Mellon Assistant Professor of Digital Art and New Media at Vanderbilt University, a 3Arts awardee, and has shown his work internationally at the Film Society of the Lincoln Center, MCA Chicago, and the Art Institute of Chicago among others. A founding member of Ensemble Dal Niente, Acierto holds an MFA from University of Illinois at Chicago, an MM from Manhattan School of Music, and a BM from DePaul University.
Alex Blau recently moved from Aspen, CO to Nashville. She has an MFA from Rhode Island School of Design and works primarily in painting. Alex’s geometric paintings draw from a variety of sources and have unexpected associations. By variously utilizing graphic languages associated with things like disposable consumer goods, computer generated architectures and unfolding mandalas, Blau’s work both points to abstraction’s open-ended possibility and highlights its incorporation into mass culture. Alex has had solo shows at several venues, including Firecat Projects in Chicago, Gallery Seomi in Seoul, Mark Moore Gallery in Santa Monica, Kevin Bruk Gallery in Miami, Barbara Davis Gallery in Houston and the New Britain Museum of American Art. She is currently teaching art at APSU and working in her studio.
McLean Fahnestock is a media artist who works in video, sound, sculptural installation, and photographic prints. McLean reclaims material from the media and institutions, seeking out footage, images, and items that carry the weight and specificity of their prior lives and ties to history. Her works intermingle truths and fictionalizations in order to question our ideas of greatness, singularity, and who and what make “history.”
McLean received a BFA from Middle Tennessee State University and MFA from California State University Long Beach. Her work has been exhibited and screened across the United States and Internationally in Ireland, Canada, Belgium, Germany and Japan. She has received an ARC Grant from the Durfee Foundation, two Hoff Foundation Grants, and was awarded a Professional Artist Fellowship from the Arts Council for Long Beach. Her work was included in a DVD compilation of short videos by the LA Film Forum. She was a finalist for a 2012 Vimeo Video Award and was recently named “Most Promising New Artist” at MADATAC 05, in Madrid, Spain.
Jessica Fife recently moved from Long Beach, California to Nashville. Jessica received her MFA from California State University Fullerton. Jessica’s work is primarily in figurative painting. Her work is an amalgamation of both Surrealism and Symbolism. A collection of the ‘classic’, reinterpreted with a modern narrative. Simultaneously vulnerable and invincible, sacred and profane. Jessica has exhibited nationally and internationally. Jessica currently teaches at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, TN.
Tina Gionis is an artist working primarily with photography and video. Her work investigates the continuing evolution of cities. She is also interested in memory, especially how it influences the present. She received her BA in Creative Writing and Psychology from the University of Toledo. After graduating, she spent ten years in Asia working as a travel photographer and ESL Writer. After repatriating to the States, she received a certificate in Documentary Photography from the International Center of Photography in NYC and an MFA in Digital Arts from Bowling Green State University. She is currently based in Nashville.
Virginia Griswold is an artist based currently in Tennessee. She received an MFA in Sculpture/Glass from Alfred University, Alfred, NY in 2011 and a BFA in Glass/ Material Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA in 2004. She has also studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art, Pilchuck Glass School, and the Penland School of Crafts. In 2011, Virginia was included in exhibitions at S12 Galleri og Verksted in Bergen, Norway and the Horowitz Center for the Visual Arts in Columbia, MD. Her solo exhibition,Here and Back, opened at the COOP Gallery, Nashville, TN in December of 2012. In 2009, she received a Brooklyn Arts Council Re-Grant to fund the project: What it is, What it will be: Objects Found and Altered in Brooklyn, as well as, a fellowship in Sculpture from the New York Foundation for the Arts. In 2011, she was awarded a residency fellowship to study at the the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, France for March/April 2012. She works as an Assistant Professor of Sculpture and 3D Foundations at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, TN.
Kristi received her B.A. from Vanderbilt University and MFA from Vermont College of Fine Art. With an interest in philosophy and literature, Kristi’s work considers the physical and psychological places of seepage—between language, bodies, and relationships. Kristi’s studio practice is primarily drawing but includes investigations into other media (photography, sculpture, and installation). Her work has been shown in numerous juried shows and invitational exhibitions across the country. Kristi has studied with Laurie Palmer (of HaHa), Jeanne Dunning and Faith Wilding in Chicago, Mira Schor in New York, and Steve Kurtz of Critical Art Assemble. She is currently Chair and Associate Professor of Fine Art at Watkins College of Art, Design & Film.
A native of Washington D.C., Harper taught for 13 years at Washington University in St. Louis before moving to Nashville in June, 2013. She teaches part time in the Vanderbilt Department of Art. Her work has been shown in group and solo shows both nationally and internationally and is held in several public collections including the Library of Congress, the Sackner Archive for Visual and Concrete Poetry, Proyecto Ace Print Collection, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the Janet Turner Print Collection at California State University. Her most recent exhibit in Nashville was called You Call it a Cloud, shown in February, 2014 at Vanderbilt’s Space 204 Gallery.
Nature is transformed into more abstract patterns in the videos of Morgan Higby-Flowers, who taught time-based media at Watkins College of Art, Design and Film before becoming an application developer at Vanderbilt University’s Department of Biomedical Informatics. Higby-Flowers employs complex coding and cutting-edge software to create sequences in which geometric forms and glitchy landscapes undergo constant formation and dissolution. On virtual journeys through his pulsating worlds, nature and technology are integrated, with a sense of energy and sublime mystery flowing from their uneasy alignment. Higby-Flowers earned an MFA from the Electronic Integrated Arts program at Alfred University and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Mandy Horton – Co-President
Mandy Rogers Horton studied at Anderson University, IN, The Queen’s University of Belfast, The Chautauqua Institute, NY, and earned an MFA from American University, Washington D.C. Growing up in a military family, frequent moves and travel in the US and Europe, left her with a fascination of culture and languages. Drawing and painting function as language through which to search, contemplate, and respond to the world around her. Rogers Horton now lives in Nashville, TN with her husband, artist, Rocky Horton, and three young children. She is a founding member of the Coop Gallery, a curatorial collective in Nashville. She teaches studio art and art history courses at local universities including Lipscomb University and Belmont University.
Rocky Horton – Co-President
Rocky Horton was born in Arlington, Tennessee. Then, he attended college at Harding University in Arkansas. He graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Art. He received an M.F.A. in studio art from WVU in December of 2003. Since that time he has served as an Associate Professor of Art at Lipscomb University in Nashville.
Bradley Marshall (b. 1988) lives and works in Nashville, TN. Marshall works in photography and sculpture, using reenactment, performance, and
documentary approaches to investigate notions of myth, memory, and autobiography, while exploiting the inherent failures of each in providing any clarification or reconciliation with the past. His work mines popular-culture and countercultural dynamics to access rituals of masculinity and the coming-of-age narrative.
He received his MFA from East Tennessee State University and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. His work has been published and exhibited nationally and internationally, including The Oxford American and The Heavy Collective, with recent exhibitions at
Fluorescent Gallery in Knoxville, TN, and Pulp Gallery in Vancouver, BC. He is currently an adjunct instructor at Austin Peay State University in the Department of Art & Design.
In 2006 I graduated from SCAD with a BFA in Painting. Since then, I have embarked on a creative journey through the exploration of my own personal aesthetic and how it spontaneously influences my interpretation of the world around me. Ranging from oil paintings, drawings, public art, and site specific installations my techniques are varied and whimsical. Through these multiple avenues I am always searching for the better artist within myself. This open ended journey always leads me somewhere new and uncharted, and hopefully with a plethora of exciting objects and images to show for along the way.
Jennifer Pepper earned her BFA from University of Tennessee, Knoxville and her MFA from University of North Texas. The past 9 years of living in rural Tennessee has caused her to meld the technological with the botanical. Her work draws from elements of landscape that she comes in contact with daily ~ like the rapid growth of invasive plants, loss of honeybees, and the weather. She teaches at Lipscomb University. She lives in Franklin with her husband and two young sons.
Jonathan Rattner holds MFAs in Film and Video Production and in Intermedia Art from the University of Iowa and a BFA in Film and Television from Tisch School for the Arts, NYU. Rattner has screened work at the Whitechapel Gallery in London, Walker Art Center, Centre of Contemporary Arts in Glasgow, Anthology Film Archives, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Atlanta Film Festival, Currents New Media Festival, The European Media Arts Festival and galleries, microcinemas, festivals and universities in Europe, Australia, Iceland, and the United States. Most recently his film The Interior won best documentary at the Ann Arbor Film Festival. He is the recipient of a 2019 Individual Artist Fellowship award from the Tennessee Arts Commission and holds the position of Assistant Professor in Cinema & Media Arts and Assistant Professor of Art at Vanderbilt University.
Robert Scobey is an interdisciplinary artist who grew up in Nashville, TN. He earned a Bachelors degree in Graphic Design from Lipscomb University and an MFA from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia. While in living in Philadelphia, Scobey worked as an assistant to Osvaldo Romberg and was a founding member of SHIFT video art collective. His videos have been exhibited at juried shows in the States and at festivals and gallery exhibits in France and the UK. His solo exhibitions have focused on an eclectic studio practice of overlapping media and also highlighted a series of carved books that has now been ongoing for over fifteen years. He is currently assistant professor of Core Studies at Watkins College of Art in Nashville.
Thomas Sturgill was born and raised in Pound, Virginia, a rural company town whose heyday had long passed. In 2002 he received his undergraduate degree in sculpture from the University of Tennessee, in Knoxville, Tennessee. Sturgill received and MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Carnegie Mellon University in 2006. He has exhibited domestically and internationally. He works both solo and collaboratively. Sturgill is a founding member of the artist collective, Pulled Resources. Thomas Sturgill currently lives and works in Nashville, Tennessee and is presently an Assistant Professor in Foundations at Middle Tennessee State University.
John Warren is a time-based media artist and professor. He has completed many short films that seek to question, to interpret, and to express that which transcends language. Over the past decade, his films and have been included in the BFI London Film Festival, Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Images Festival in Toronto, Collegium Hungaricum Berlin, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, REDCAT, Other Cinema in San Francisco, New York’s Anthology Film Archives, Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, Echo Park Film Center, Antimatter Film Festival, Iowa City Documentary Festival, and the Black Maria Film Festival. Warren earned an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts, and he currently teaches Video Installation and Fundamentals of Film & Video Production at Vanderbilt University.
Donna L. Woodley
Donna L. Woodley works and resides in Nashville, TN. She is a painter whose recent works explore black culture within the context of American culture. The presence of humor and absurdity in her work is used to disarm the intensity that seems inherent when engaging in the discourse of black culture. As a Master of Fine Arts candidate at Lesley University in Boston, Massachusetts, she decided to pursue an education in fine arts after twenty years as an accountant. This journey has sparked her passion for painting specifically informed by discourse concerning black women and black experiences in American society. She has shown at the Tennessee Art League, Cummins Station, Tennessee State University’s Hiram Van Gordon gallery, Spreadluv, and Lesley University.