Hashan Cooray was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka in 1987 and pursued a career as a visual artist via unconventional means of both self-learning, courses in fine art and his experience as an Art Director in the advertising industry. His works are predominantly portraiture that depict a deeper, more profound insight into his subjects. Adverse to the 'pretty picture', Cooray's works are dark, intense and honest representations of the real world.
In 2008 Hashan Cooray began a course in fine art practice at Art Way Institute Nugegoda and began participating at group exhibitions and presentations organised by the George Keyt Foundation between the years of 2010 and 2017. In 2016 he was invited by the Bennetton Collection to create a work to be featured in 'Re-Imagining Ceylon' for the Imago Mundi book project.
In 2017 Cooray presented his first solo exhibition of works with Art Space Sri Lanka titled 'Lab Rats'. The exhibition included a series of small colourful pastel on paper works, the depictions veering towards what would be an evolved, mature, strengthened understanding of his subjects in his second solo show 'Parahumans' held in 2019, the first of his exhibitions with Saskia Fernando Gallery. Inspired by his avid reading and study of Sri Lankan intelligentsia, Hashan Cooray reflects on the interaction between economic systems and their effect on people.
In 2019 he also participated in Nawa Kalukaruwo at the JDA Perera Gallery and curated the exhibition titled 'Leo Art' for Leo Burnett Advertising Agency at the Lionel Wendt Art Gallery. He currently works as Art Director at Leo Burnett Advertising Agency alongside his work as a visual artist. His works belong to private collections in Sri Lanka, Spain, USA, New Zealand and India.