Mela Cooke

Artwork on display at Gallery Beneath

Selected Artwork Previously Sold at Gallery Beneath

Mela Cooke studied sculpture at the Brisbane Institute of Art with Frank Lambert and continued working with him for several years after. Her past life as a physiotherapist is apparent in her strikingly realistic style of sculpture, which pays particular attention to the physical form at rest. Her posing figures are not just aesthetically pleasing they are also imbued with individual human character.

Artist Statement:

My sculptures are informed by my enduring interest in portraying and defining the character and beauty of the people in my life.

I have always been a ‘people’s person’, and I delight in endeavouring to capture the essence of the personalities of my family and friends in my sculptures. I have been influenced by two sculptors in particular, Constantine Brancusi and Henry Moore, and their work has inspired me to employ strong lines and truthful gestures in order to make my sculptures live.

I have worked in various mediums, including marble, but have arrived at the point in my life where my love of the serenity of working in clay, and my appreciation of the beauty & timelessness of bronze, has resulted in my now working solely in this medium.

1998-2000 - Studied Marble Sculpting with Graham Radcliffe
1993-2013 - Continued private classes with Frank Lambert
1991-93 - Brisbane Institute of Art, with Frank Lambert

1992-2019 - Group Exhibitions in Brisbane and Melbourne
2016 - Solo Exhibition in Sydney
2003 - Group Exhibition in London
2002 - Solo Exhibition in Brisbane

Awards & Prizes
2018 Finalist in Mont alto Vineyard Annual Sculpture Exhibition Vic
2018 Winner of the Family Choice Award Mont alto Sculpture Exhibition Vic
2018 Winner Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition
2018 Winner of the ‘Volunteers Choice’ Award Stanthorpe Art Prize
2018 Finalist Artentwine Sculpture Biennial Tas
2018 Royal Qld Exhibition 2nd prize Indoor Sculpture
2018 Royal Qld Exhibition 1st prize Outdoor Sculpture
2018 Winner Wynnum Manly Yacht Club Sculpture Exhibition
2018 Winner People’s Choice Sculptors Qld Annual Exhibition
2017 Sculptor of eleven bronze sculptures for Maryborough Sculpture Trail
2017 Sculptor for life size Mother Dingo & Pups at Hervey Bay Qld
2017 2nd prize Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition
2017 Girt By Sea Outdoor Sculpture Award, Redland Bay 1st prize
2017 Royal Qld Exhibition 1st prize & Highly Commended
2017 Royal Qld Exhibition Grand Champion Sculptor
2016 Royal Qld Exhibition Highly Commended
2016 Sculptor of seven life size bronzes for Maryborough’s Sculpture Trail
2016’Sculpture on the Edge’ Spicer’s Tamarind 2016 Highly Commended
2015 Sculptor for the Maryborough(Qld) Sculpture Trail, six bronzes.
2014 Winner first prize royal Qld show for sculpture 
2014 Winner Nudgee college art exhibition 1st prize sculpture 
2013 Winner 3rd prize royal Qld show for sculpture 
2012 - Nudgee College Art Festival, 1st Prize Sculpture
2012 - RNA, 3rd Prize Sculpture & Highly Recommended
2012 - Nundah Village Art Exhibition, 2nd Prize Sculpture
2011 - Nundah Village Art Exhibition, 1st Prize Sculpture
2010 - Live life Villages Art Exhibition, 1st Prize Sculpture
2005 - Society of Queensland Sculptor Prize
2003 - Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition Prize
2002 - Society of Queensland Sculptor Prize
2002 - Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition Prize
2000 - Society of Queensland Sculptor Prize
1999 - Winner of Comer ford Stone Sculpting Award
1999 - Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition Prize
1998 - Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition Prize
1997 - Brookfield Sculpture Exhibition Prize


Private collections: Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, France, USA, UK, Belgium, HK, Shanghai.
Private collection of McCarthy Homes, work displayed in several of their display homes.