Tucker Cooke received his B.F.A. from Stetson University and his M.F.A. from the University of Georgia. Since 1967 he has been on faculty at the University of North Carolina at Asheville teaching classes in life painting, life drawing, watercolors, Arts and Ideas laboratory and other specialty courses.
In his own drawing and painting, Tucker Cooke focuses primarily on figurative work and his art can be found in numerous permanent and public collections across the United States. He has also exhibited in museums such as the Mint Museum in Charlotte, the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston Salem and the Asheville Art Museum. In 1997, Tucker Cooke received the UNC Board of Governor's Award for Excellence in Teaching.