Painter, draughtsman, writer, printmaker and teacher, born in London. It was while working at Odhams Press that Coker handled artists’ drawings and began studying initially part-time at St Martin’s School of Art, full-time, 1947–50, then Royal College of Art, 1950–4, winning a Royal Scholarship in 1951. A British Institution Scholarship followed three years later. From 1954–73 Coker taught at St Martin’s School of Art. When he left college Coker became associated with the Kitchen Sink realist painters and had the first of a string of shows at Zwemmer Gallery in 1956. In 1962 he participated in the Arts Council touring exhibition British Painting 1950–7, in 1966 in another Arts Council show, Painters in East Anglia. By then his attention had been diverted from the early butcher’s shop subject, which shocked many people, to landscape, which remained his preoccupation.

Text source: 'Artists in Britain Since 1945' by David Buckman (Art Dictionaries Ltd, part of Sansom & Company)

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