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(1928 – 2016), United Kingdom

Harold Cohen Biography

Harold Cohen (1928–2016) was a British artist whose innovations at the forefront of technology changed the face of computer art. Unfolding where art and artificial intelligence intersect, Cohen's artistic practice was punctuated by his famed invention of AARON, a computer programme designed to create art independently. Cohen's work attracted global attention and was exhibited at major institutions such as Tate London and SFMOMA.

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Having graduated from Slade School of Fine Art, Cohen's first solo exhibition was held at Ashmolean Musuem, Oxford in 1951. Further solo shows followed, including at Whitechapel Gallery in 1965. Cohen represented the UK at the 1966 Venice Biennale, Documenta III, the Paris Biennale, and the Carnegie International.

Cohen relocated to the United States as a visiting lecturer at the University of California, San Diego, in 1968. It would be almost three decades Cohen remained at UC San Diego as professor, chairman of the Visual Arts Department and eventually in 1992, director of the Centre for Research in Computing and the Arts. During this time Cohen began work on AARON, a venture to which he would devote the next five decades, instigating new areas of study and pioneering generative art.

After his retirement from UCSD he continued to work on AARON and produce new artwork in his studio in Encinitas, California. In 2014, Cohen received the ACM SIGGRAPH Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement in Digital Art.

Text courtesy Gazelli Art House.

Harold Cohen
featured artworks

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Untitled by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork works on paper, drawing
Harold Cohen Untitled, 1987 Dye over ink on paper
81.3 x 111.8 cm
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AARON at Tsukuba #6 by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork drawing
Harold Cohen AARON at Tsukuba #6, 1985 Ink on paper
55.9 x 76.2 cm
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Untitled by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork works on paper, drawing
Harold Cohen Untitled, 1982 Coloured dye over ink on paper
81.8 x 64.8 cm
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In AARON’s Garden #6 by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork painting, works on paper, photography, print, drawing
Harold Cohen In AARON’s Garden #6, 2007 Coloured ink on paper
79.6 x 64.6 cm
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Untitled by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork drawing
Harold Cohen Untitled, 1987 Dye over ink on paper
104.8 x 132.8 cm
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London at the Tate by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork painting, works on paper, drawing
Harold Cohen London at the Tate, 1983 Ink on paper
55.9 x 76.2 cm
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First Athletes, Athlete Series by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork painting
Harold Cohen First Athletes, Athlete Series, 1986 Acrylic on canvas
246.5 x 305 cm
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Jerry by Harold Cohen contemporary artwork painting, works on paper
Harold Cohen Jerry, 1992 Oil on canvas
61 x 86.4 cm
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Harold Cohen
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