Alika Cooper uses textiles to create portraits and landscapes filled with bold color gradients. Her subject matter is at once personal and universal; she relies on her own experiences and relationships to question pervasive themes such as the female body and sexuality, idealized beauty, and old-fashioned American values. She cites her childhood spent in rural, suburban environments and the encouragement of crafting in her household as major influences of her work. By using quilting and appliqué techniques to create pieces that explore female sexuality, Alika transforms a gendered and conservative craft into a contemporary art form that invites us to reflect upon where our notions of body image and sexuality fit within traditional and modest American values.
When Alika first started experimenting with quilt making, the first quilt she made was of Grace Jones and Dolph Lundgren embracing.