Nina Kotel was born in Kiev (Ukraine, USSR) in 1949. From 1960 to 1967 she attended the state republic secondary art school of Kiev and from 1967 to 1973 studied at the Kiev State Art Institute. Kotel began to exhibit her works in 1974, worked as an artist for the Art Fund Graphic Arts Factory of Kiev until 1982 and as an illustrator for Kiev and Moscow publishers until 1987. She settled in Moscow in 1980 and concentrated on doing wax and synthetic pastels, charcoal, lead and coloured pencil drawings, sanguines, paintings, video installations and performances. She joined the Artists Union in 1987.
In her time Kotel cooperated with the Contemporary Art Centre on Yakimanka and the State Centre for Contemporary Art (Moscow), with many Moscow galleries, with GalleriEnkehuset (Stockholm, Sweden), with the Karenina Gallery (Vienna – Moscow) and with the Russian Gallery (Tallinn, Estonia). She contributed to the international Art Manezh and Art Moscow fairs and numerous museum projects, including those staged at the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State Russian Museum, the Art Museum of Tomsk, the Nizhni Tagil Art Museum, the Chekhov House Museum of Yalta, the Art Museum of Sevastopol, the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp (MuHKA, Belgium) and the Museum of the Mikulov Castle (Mikulov, Czech Republic). Kotel’s works are in museum collections of Nizhni Tagil, Novosibirsk, Orel, Stavropol, Tomsk, the Chekhov House Museum of Yalta and the State Centre for Contemporary Art and in private collections inside and outside Russia, including the collection of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.