Architect, Public Artist
Nina is the founding principal of Studio Cooke John Architecture and Design, a multidisciplinary design studio that values placemaking as a way to transform relationships between people and the built environment. Working at the scale of the human body; individually or collectively, in the home or on the street, responding to how we use space in our everyday lives; within the family unit and as a community.
Studio Cooke John was recently selected to design the new Harriet Tubman Monument in Newark, NJ to be unveiled in the summer of 2022. The studio was awarded a 2021 AIA Merit Award for the public art installation, Point of Action, commissioned for the Flatiron public plazas in 2020 and currently on view at the Wassaic Project. Nina was named a 2022 United States Artists Fellow. Her work has also been featured in Architectural Record, Madame Architect, The New York Times, Dwell, NBC’s Open House, the Center for Architecture’s 2018 exhibition, Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip-Hop Architecture and PBS NewsHour Weekend.
Nina began her professional career working on the designs of cultural institutions with Voorsanger and Associates and Polshek Partnership (now Ennead) before moving on to retail design, corporate offices and custom residential construction. She is licensed to practice architecture in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica, Nina earned her Bachelor of Architecture degree from Cornell University and MSAAD from Columbia University. She has been a design educator for 20 years teaching at NYIT, Syracuse University, Parsons School of Design and currently at the Columbia Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation.