Cornelia Parker studied at Gloucester College of Art (1974 – 1975), Wolverhampton Polytechnic, BA Hons (1975 – 1978) and Reading University, MFA (1980 – 1982).
She is well known for her large scale, often site specific, installations. Her engagement with the fragility of existence and the transformation of matter is exemplified in two key works: Dark Matter, a cartoon-like reconstruction of an exploded army shed, and Heart of Darkness, the formal arrangement of charred remains from a forest fire. There is an apocalyptic tone to much of her work but she also demonstrates a concern with the more insidious effects of global warming and consumerism.
Parker works in a variety of mediums and has collaborated with institutions such as HM Customs & Excise, Royal Armouries, Madame Tussauds and Victoria & Albert Museum, London. She was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1997. She was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2010.