Sculptor, Potter, Painter
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Coco Costigan was born in Santa Monica, California, in 1971. She had a wonderful childhood enjoying the beach, the mountains and had a solid work ethic and began working at the age of 12. Coco saved her money with hopes to travel, bringing culture into her living space. Coco’s mom worked for a major airline allowing Coco the ability to explore various countries from a young age, on into her late twenties. At age 14, Coco spent the summer visiting family in Europe. Being able to experience the culture of several countries gave her a deeper respect for humanity and an appreciation for art, history, architecture, as well as artifacts that have stood the test of time. Architecture was something Coco had been drawn to at an early age, however, her love for painting and working in clay became her passion during her college years.
Coco spent a semester in London, England studying history and art. She returned to Santa Monica College to finish her AA degree with an emphasis in design. In 1992, Coco transferred to California State University of Longe Beach where she would earn a B.F.A. degree in Ceramic Arts in 1996. While attending college, Coco began teaching ceramics in 1994.
In 1997, Coco moved back to her home town of Santa Monica. Living close to her parents home, her father let her turn half of his garage into a ceramics studio space. This was where she came up with her first business name “In Pop’s Garage”. Coco created custom orders and taught private pottery lessons. Coco also taught at Corinth Ceramics Studio in West Los Angeles until she opened her own ceramics studio/gallery. In 2000, Coco opened her own Ceramics studio / gallery called Santa Monica Mudd, located on Santa Monica Blvd. It was there that she would create, exhibit and teach ceramic art classes to kids and adults of all ages. In 2011, a couple years after starting a family with her husband Tom, she relocated her business to Malibu, C.A., so that she could work from home and raise their children.
Getting back to her mother’s roots, in 2019, Coco and her family relocated to Bozeman, Montana. Coco continues to create in a studio located in her home as she continues to exhibits her work at local venues such as the SLAM Festival, Sweet Pea Festival, The Archie Bray Foundation, The Emerson Center for Arts and Culture and several other local venues and galleries. Coco is a member/artist of the Artists’ Gallery in Downtown Bozeman, located in the Emerson Center for Arts & Culture. Coco’s passion for what she creates is as great as the passion she has for her family.
Coco’s inspiration for her sculptural work came from her family’s experiences. Her father had many stories to share about his childhood, the Navy during World War II, as well his years in the FBI. He also held onto artifacts and relics, helping to make each story come to life. Tools and toys, that his father had built and/or collected, were amongst some of the possessions he had preserved. Some items date back to the early 1900’s. These objects were had been carefully stored in his garage and many of his father’s tools were still put to use. This was where much of Coco’s inspiration came from and was where Coco made it her mission to recreate those family heirlooms, capturing a moment in time that people can relate to and reflect upon. Each of these relics were recreated out of clay, using techniques such as; slab, wheel, and carving methods.
In 1985 Coco traveled throughout Europe to explore museums, architectural sites and got to experience a variety of culture. This is when she decided she wanted to pursue a career in fine art.
In 1989 Coco received the Denise E Rielly Award for Best Female Artist in the Senior Art Exhibition at Santa Monica High School.
In 1990 Coco returned to Europe to play club soccer for Long Beach International Women’s team at the Harlem Cup in Amsterdam. Coco’s team placed second and was awarded the Silver Cup. She headed to England to spend a semester in London, studying Art / History.
Coco attended Santa Monica Community college and received an AA degree with an emphasis in design in 1992.
Coco attended California State University of Long Beach, earning a BFA degree in Ceramic Art in 1996.
First Solo exhibition”A Carving Artist” at Cal. St. Univ. of Long Beach, C.A., in 1997
1997 “He Traded His Boots for Wings” sculpture was selected in a juried show at the “Ink & Clay” exhibit at Cal. St. Univ. Poly Pomona.
In 1997 Coco began teaching at the Corinth Ceramics Studio in West Los Angeles, C.A. and opened her own studio “In Pop’s Garage”.
In 2000 Coco expanded her small business into a studio/gallery called Santa Monica Mudd, located in Santa Monica, C.A. and Malibu Mudd Studio in Malibu, C.A. between the years 2000 – 2019. This is where she would create, host exhibitions and teach ceramics.
Coco has worked with several organizations as well as private entities over the years creating and executing projects for; The California Yacht Club, South Coast Plaza Garden Show, The Bel Air Garden Club, Art Space – Malibu, The Challengers Boys and Girls Club in Los Angeles, C.A., John Thomas Dye Independant School, Our Lady of Malibu, to name a few.
Coco has been running her own studio/business for over 20 years and currently resides in Bozeman, M.T. where she continues to work in clay and on canvas.
Coco’s ceramic and canvas work has been exhibited throughout Southern C.A. including; Santa Monica, Venice, Malibu, Santa Barbara, Long Beach and Palm Dessert. as well as in Helena and Bozeman Montana.
Private Collection; Horn Family – Bel Air, C.A., DeLuise – West Hollywood, C.A., Frank Family – Malibu, C.A., M. Milken – Malibu, C.A., E. Meyer – Santa Monica, C.A., Henrich – Huntington Beach, C.A., Acevedo – Goleta, C.A.
Coco’s realism work is nationally recognized through juried exhibitions at NCECA conferences. (National Council of Education for Ceramic Arts); 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2020.
In 2018, 2019, and 2020 the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, M.T.,receiving The People’s Choice Award in 2018.
Coco’s Functional Art has been part of the SLAM Festival in 2019, 2020 and 2022 and the Big Sky Artisan Festival 2022.
Solo exhibition in The Jessie Wilber Gallery at the Emerson Center for Arts and Culture in Bozeman, M.T., in 2021.
A solo exhibition of Coco’s “Wall Art” will be held at Wild Joe’s on Main Street in Downtown Bozeman, M.T.in August 2022.
Coco received the inaugural award for the Mug Contest at the The Sweet Pea Festival in 2021 as well as the 1st place award art the Art Show in 2021 and an Honorable Mention at the Sweet Pea Festival Winter Art Show in 2022.
Coco is currently a member/artist at The Artists’ Gallery in Bozeman, M.T.