Lisa Kokin Biography
Lisa Kokin received her BFA and MFA from the California College of the Arts in Oakland, CA. The recipient of numerous awards and grants, Kokin was most recently given the Dorothy Saxe Award from the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco and the Purchase Award from the Richmond Civic Center Public Art Interior Acquisitions Project in Richmond, CA. Kokin’s work has been featured in many books and articles including the upcoming Art Made From Books, Chronicle Press, by Laura Heyenga.
Lisa Kokin Description
Lisa Kokin makes art with recycled materials that she finds at flea markets, thrift stores, and recycling centers. She has worked with buttons, photographs, and books, most recently with simple thread and zippers.
Kokin’s work is often a critique of the socio-political status quo imbued with a healthy dose of levity and a keen sensitivity to materials and processes. Sewing and fiber-related sensibilities play a key role in much of Kokin’s work, which she attributes to growing up in a family of upholsterers. Thread, which in the past she used to construct and embellish her work has, in her most recent body of work, become the primary material. Kokin explores irony and memory in her seemingly ephemeral pieces, allowing transiency itself to be immortalized in lasting works of art.
It is difficult to classify Lisa Kokin’s work. She is a conceptual artist to be sure, but few conceptual artists break as many boundaries in working with their materials. Her work has content, humor and social commentary while maintaining a rigorous adherence to painstaking process.
Lisa Kokin in her studio interviewed by Jewish Contemporary Museum