About The Artist

Adaja Cooper is a national award-winning, published artist from Little Rock, Arkansas. Born in Magnolia, Arkansas, Adaja has always expressed a passion for art at a young age through drawings and comic strips. At the age of 17, Adaja began using paint to experiment with bright colors and immersive portraits, and has fallen in love ever since. During the summer of 2017, Adaja was accepted into Arkansas Governor’s School, where she further developed her skills with acrylics and oils. Along with winning multiple state competitions for her art, including AYAA (Arkansas Young Artists Association), she has been to national competitions competing with her paintings. In 2019, she won third place in the painting category at the National NAACP Act-So Competition in Detroit, Michigan.

Adaja’s art has also been published in the Mahyue Magazine, the Little Rock Soirée Magazine, and Hendrix College’s Aonian Literary Magazine. Her art also graced the cover of JABSE (Journal of the Alliance of Black School Educators) magazine. She created couple paintings for the Central Arkansas Library System, one which is featured on a billboard in Little Rock, Arkansas. Adaja has been in multiple galleries including the Hearne Fine Art Gallery, Mosaic Templars Cultural Museum, and The Baum Gallery. She was named a finalist for the 2022 Arkansas Times "Best of Arkansas" in the Visual Art category, and was featured on the cover of the July issue of the magazine. Adaja is currently pursuing a Visual Art Degree and Business Minor from Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas.

Artist's Statement

I am an artist who use her experiences of being a Black woman living in America as inspiration for my work. I am a mixed media visual artist who takes inspiration from history, media, and cultural encounters to create stories of shared black experiences in a fresh way. My subjects typically have bold facial expressions, with vivid backgrounds to project the energy of the environment. I combine different materials to show a difference in time, technique, and theme in my practice.