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Bek Coogan

Shared Lines: Pūtahitanga exhibiting artist

COOOOGZ peavy copy - Oona Ten.jpg

Image Credit: Pat Kraus Photography



Bek Coogan, described by The Audio Foundation (AK) as a ‘Veteran of Counter Culture’ (Nowhere Festival 2019) is a multi-disciplinary artist, who working either solo or collaboratively, likes to test what ‘Art’ is. Bek Coogan has toured and exhibited nationally and internationally. Bek Coogan has a BFA, (Whanganui, 1999), MFA (hons.) Massey University (Wgtn 2005). 


Bek sees Performance Art, Video, Bands and Drawing as an active and politicised ideology. Art is the sometimes contradictory, messy, by-product of figuring out ways to keep the communication with the cosmic source, direct and affordable. 


Her art/band history whakapapa’s back to ‘Dog Tooth Violet’, ‘Cortina’, ‘Full FKNG Moon’, ‘Fantasing, ‘The Gorge’. Bek was also a professional musician with ‘The Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra’. 


Bek’s first exhibition of drawings was in 2002, this exhibition birthed an on-going practise based around an entity called Sheville, part self portrait-part character-part live performance, positing an ‘alternative female and mythic utopia’, based on a yearning for pre-industrial, pre-colonial relationships with our long lost lover, Papatūānuku. “Basically I just wanted to go and live in a cave “ B.Coogan 2000


Pakeha with Irish and Cornish/English/Scottish ancestory, Originally from Te Papaioea. ( PN ), Bek Coogan vocalizes through a Peavey ‘Rage’ 158 and is currently based in Karori, Te Whanganui-a-Tara.


Shared Lines: Pūtahitanga 2020


Kia ora Rā ! My drawing shows a snap-shot of where i was at, at the point of the drawing deadline. My initial ideas re: rahui/lockdown got morphed into documentation of where some lives are at in spite of the pandemic. Life/crisis/mental health/addictions/family pain flows on regardless. Covid can't stop the lessons of the genes. Strength multiplies, divides, grows, like splintered daffodils. The strong birds call us to keep going. My Aunty called herself a "tuff bird". I prayed to the dead birds too, as i dug for gold in my experience. Even praying/karakia is something to be staunchly held. Thank you Shared Lines/ Pūtahitanga for the opportunity to be part of the 'Exquisite river body'. Peace. Bek Coogan.

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