Michael Cooper (b. 1944, Dublin) is a British sculptor who creates both large and small-scale animal and human sculptures in marble, stone and bronze. Having grown up in the west of Ireland, Cooper moved to England to study at Heatherly’s School of Art between 1969 and 1971, and then continued to study under Anthony Gray.
Working in a variety of different mediums including marble, stone and bronze, it is the nature of the material that lends itself to Cooper’s flowing harmonies of surface and so seductively suggests the power and grace of the natural world. Cooper’s sensuous sculptures have a deep and quiet energy, perhaps imparted by the long hours of chipping which bring them forth from the stone, revealing not only the inner calm and beauty of the stone but also the essence of the animal itself. His work brings the third dimension vividly to life through the irresistible urge to feel and caress the surface and form, and this abstract pleasure is essential to the appreciation of his sculptures.
Cooper has exhibited widely since 1974, both in Britain and abroad, including Jersey and London Zoos, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and The Royal Academy, as well as with many private galleries. His large-scale commissions include a four-ton Gorilla for Lord Carrington’s Sculpture Garden, a 1.5 metre high Bear for Bicester Village in Oxfordshire and a reclining figure in Travertine Marble for Covent Garden in London.
Cooper is a fellow of the Royal British Society of Sculptors and exhibits permanently at The Sir Charles Napier restaurant, Oxon. He now lives and works in Buckinghamshire.