Erin Alison Cooke is an American painter who lives and works currently in Nashville, Tennessee. From a young age, she had deep interest in art, science, and the intersection between the two.
Cooke graduated in 2001 from Wake Forest University in North Carolina as valedictorian with a BA in Studio Art, including Honors in Studio Art, and subsequently went on to study at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She also continued to paint at the same time, creating multiple works inspired by human anatomy. In 2005, she graduated with a degree in medicine from Baylor, and then completed radiology residency in Seattle in 2010 and fellowship in New Orleans in 2011. Subsequently she returned to Seattle, where she divided her time between the practices of medicine and painting. In 2020, she was recruited to Vanderbilt University to combine her work as both a diagnostic radiologist and an artist while teaching at the medical center.
Cooke has a special situation, working actively in the visual world not only as a painter but also as a diagnostic radiologist. Her artwork is naturally informed by her experiences of daily examination of the human body and its forms through medical imaging. Her work as a radiologist involves paying attention to subtle details while keeping in mind the overall picture and pattern of pathologic processes; similarly, her work as a painter requires continually consciously and unconsciously responding to mark making, forms, color and rhythm while keeping in mind the evolution of a piece as a whole. In this way, her dual professions are complementary.
Her works over the past several years have drawn on Cubism, movement, textural studies and color abstraction, and have been primarily acrylic on canvas paintings, including works of large scale. Cooke’s paintings are showcased in both public and private collections across the United States.