Info

 
1970       Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico
1992-95 HFG, Design Academy, Offenbach, Germany
1991-92 University of Barcelona, Fine Arts Faculty, Barcelona
1988-92 School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Bachelor of Fine Arts, Chicago
 

Solo Exhibitions

 
2013       Pearls, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2011 Movements, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2010 Vibrations, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2009 Spheres and Strings, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2008 Volver, Art/Space Virginia Miller Galleries, Coral Gables (Miami)
2006 Hybrids, Galería Safia, Barcelona
Hybrids, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2005 Neue Bilder, Gästehaus der Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität, Frankfurt
2004 Paisajes Evaporados, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2003 Vom Kleinen und Großen, Galerie Alexei Russak, Frankfurt
2001 Negro, Blanco y Rojo, Galería Principal Sombrerers, Barcelona
1999 Organische Erzählungen, ML 44 Ausstellungsraum, Frankfurt
 

Group Exhibitions

 

 
2014       20 Jahre Arte Giani, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2012       Color, Form, Space, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami, Florida
2011 Tardor D'art 2011 On-Off, Arts Santa Mónica / Galería Safia, Barcelona
Terra Incognita,Altana Galerie, Dresden
2010 Life through Inner-Self Contemplation, State of the Arts Gallery, Hong Kong
16 years Arte Giani, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
2009 Valoarte - 7th Edition, Galería Nacional, San Jose, Costa Rica
2008 Body of Water, West Cork Arts Centre, Cork, Ireland
2007 Schwarz, Arte Giani, Frankfurt
Panorama Latinoamericano, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
Latin American Invitational, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
L'illa D'art 07, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2006 Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach California
L'illa D'art 06, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2005 Latin American Visions, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
Young Latin Americans, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
Latin American Invitational, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
L'illa D'art 05, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2004 Latin American Invitational, ArtSpace/ Virginia Miller Galleries, Miami
L'illa D'art 04, Galería Safia, Barcelona
Pintura Ultima, Galería Sicart, Vilafranca del Penedés, Barcelona
El Submundo de la Piel, BAC, Festival Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo en Barcelona
2003 Beautiful Menace, BAC, Centro Cultural Contemporáneo de Barcelona
Soledades, Galería Hartman, Barcelona
10 Años de Vida, La Santa, Barcelona
L'illa D'art 03, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2002 Compact Art Collection #09, Rrose Selavy, Barcelona
L'illa D'art 02, Galería Safia, Barcelona
2001 L'illa D'art 01, Galería Safia, Barcelona
Kunstbetrieb stellt aus, ML 44 Ausstellungsraum, Frankfurt
Homage to Andy Bueso, Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art Miami
Galería Sienna, Menorca, Spain
2000 L'illa D'art 2000, Galería Safia, Barcelona
1998 Galerie Prestel, Frankfurt
1997 Euroamerica Galleries, New York
Rundgang 97, HFG Offenbach
1996 Faces Art Gallery, Bay Harbor Islands, Florida
1995 International Women's Show, Miami Beach Convention Center, Miami
Tributo a la Herencia Hispana , Museum of Hispanic & Latin American Art, Miami
Eye on up and Coming Puerto Rican Artists, Ami-Rich Art Gallery, Miami
Eight Latin American Artists, Carib Art Gallery, New York
Santa Fe International Academy of Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico

1994 Herencia Hispana en America, Florida Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art
Fresh Young Artists at 55 Mercer, 55 Mercer Gallery,  New York
1993 Contemporary Spanish & Latin American Art, Museum of Hispanic & Latin American Art, Miami
Bachelors of Fine Arts Exhibit, Chicago
1991 Roots of Inner Space, South Shore Cultural Center Gallery,  Chicago
2nd Annual State of the Art Exhibition, South Florida Art Center Exhibiting Space Miami
1990 New Works, Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center Chicago
Windows to the Imagination, Gallery 2 Chicago
Open Walls, Gallery 1633 Chicago
1988 Betty Rymer Gallery, Chicago
Schafler Art Gallery, New York
 

Fairs

 

 
Art al Hotel 03

Art Frankfurt 01, Art Frankfurt 03

Affordable Art Fair, New York 03

Arteamericas Miami 06

Bridge Art Fair Miami 06, Bridge Art Fair Miami 08

Fira Internacional d’Art de Barcelona 96

Frankfurter Buchmesse 95

INDEX Dubai – Arab Emirates

Kunst 05 Zurich, Kunst 06 Zurich, Kunst 07 Zurich, Kunst 10 Zurich, Kunst 11 Zurich, Kunst 12 Zurich

Liste Köln 06

 

 

Reviews

 

 
La Vanguardia, “Michelle Concepción exposa pintures abstractes que suggereixen canvis” Juan Bufill, Barcelona, September 2011

Frankfurter Rundschau, “Wimmelnde Einzeller” Madelaine Reckmann, May 2011

Travel & Leisure, Barcelona, March 2, 2012

Art News, “Five Abstract Visions” Margery Gordon, January 1, 2010

El Nuevo Herald, “Bisiones Abstractas” Janet Batet, December 11, 2009

El Nuevo Herald, “Abstracciones suspendidas,” Janet Batet, September 2008

Winwood Art Magazine,”Visual Meditations” Vol 1 No. 10, June 2008

Papers D’art, “La pintura com a explosió de energia,” Ramon Casalé Barcelona , November.06

Die Welt, “Panorama, ” Uwe Wittstock, Frankfurt, July 16, 2006

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, “In der Schwebe, ” Christa von Helmolt, Frankfurt, July 31, 2006

El Nuevo Herald, “Caras Nuevas,” José Antonio Évora, June 26, 2005

La Vanguardia, “Paisajes evaporados y luz de piedra lunar,” Juan Bufill, Barcelona June 20, 2004

Die Welt, “Michelle Concepción in der Galerie Russak in Frankfurt.” Uwe Wittstock, January 10, 2004

Die Welt, “Die Art Frankfurt schreitet siegreich voran,” Gerhard Charles Rump, Frankfurt May 3, 2003

La Vanguardia, “En soledad y en el color,” Juan Bufill, Barcelona, May 25, 2003

Frankfurter Rundschau, “Die Welt im Wohnzimmer,” Frankfurt, Annik Aicher, November 28, 2002

Movín Barcelona, “Para una Convivencia Pacífica,” Barcelona, November 2002

La Vanguardia, “Una Nueva Corriente,” Juan Bufill, Barcelona, November 3, 2002

Fankfurter Rundschau, “Ungenierte greifen auch mal in den Privatkühlschrank,” Annik Aicher Dec. 6, 2001

Guía del Ocio, “Negro, Rojo y Blanco, Perspectivas Cruzadas,” Jaume Vidal, Barcelona October 2001

El País, “Colors de Temporada,” Jaume Vidal, Barcelona, October 6, 2001

Osmus, “Pintando el caribe en los bosques de Alemania,” Miami Florida, April 1996

 

 

 

Collections

 

 
Since 2002 Colección Sanahuja, Barcelona Spain

Since 2008 Das Land Hessen, Wiesbaden, Germany

Since 2009 Hyatt Regency Shenzhen, China

Since 2012 Westin, Xiamen, China

Since 2013 Roche Diagnostics, Dubai

 

 

Michelle Concepción: Abstraction - Sensation

By Peter Frank

 

The power abstract painting holds over the beholder is not so much that of form itself but of its suggestion. The ideologies of artistic practice may motivate painters and fix their positions in the discourse of art history, but for viewers of the work itself, the painting exists as image and/or object-an image or object whose relationship to the quotidian world of perception is ambiguous and multivalent. Our associations frame our understandings: Frank Stella’s declaration that “What you see is what you see” may be a theoretical tautology, but when what you see is what you associate with what you are seeing-a process of recognition, that is, of discerning resemblances-an abstract form takes on resonance outside the control of its maker.

An interpretive responsibility thus befalls the beholder, acknowledged by Marcel Duchamp when he opined that “The viewer completes the work of art.” In her painterly practice, Michelle Concepción acknowledges this responsibility, and enters thereby into an ongoing relationship with the viewer. Rather than insist that all that is in her work is pigment assuming shapes on a support, Concepción amplifies the associative resonance of those shapes by manipulating the pigment-and, masterfully, the relationship of pigment to support. A painter of effect (although not merely a painter of effect), Concepción subjects a highly refined formal vocabulary to an intricate interplay of facture and illusion, luminescence and darkness, apparent volume and apparent transparency, color and colorlessness, surface and infinite gradation. Such an effect-driven interplay opens up a universe of comprehensions, none of which Concepción controls-and all of which she profoundly influences.

Each of us sees the myriad interplays of form, color, and shade that dominate Concepción’s paintings slightly differently, perhaps, but we all recognize that her forms float, often one across another, and that they occupy a neutral field that can be read at once as behind and amid her shapes. The nature of those forms is impossible to assert. Some of us see inorganic objects like stones or oil slicks, others of us discern microscopic organisms, still others read these blots and tendrils as plant forms (especially aquatic ones), and so forth. Some of us are certain these shapes, whatever they are, are in motion, while others among us see them fixed in the picture, even establishing patterned rhythms. The interpretive possibilities are manifold, but they remain just that: interpretive, not definitive, and possibilities, not actualities. If for Concepción the paintings are at least what they are made of, for us, not privy to her technique, not even this is fixed.

Gerhard Charles Rump has remarked that Concepción’s forms “show themselves to be a section of the world much larger than the extension of the canvas,” (1) and the tendency of the forms to repeat in most of her paintings until they pass out of the picture (continuing the microorganic metaphor, as anyone knows who has tried to frame a protozoan under the gaze of a microscope) bear out Rump’s observation. But equally, the nature of these paintings as image fields helps us retain a sense of the paintings as concretions, as things, meaning that on at least the level of material, the objecthood of any given painting confines its shapes to its surface; the shapes may imply a pictorial limitlessness, but ultimately they are subject to the traditional bounds of pictorial practice.

The poetics of Concepción’s art emerge from this web of artistic generation and audience reception, from the constant play between what has been made and what is perceived. But this play, this enmeshing of meaning, does not bind such poetics. Those finally anchor in what effect Concepción’s paintings have upon something behind our eyes. We do not feel lighter, brighter, smaller, larger, more enchanted, or more mystified because these works have fooled our eyes into reading them this way or that; we feel thus because these works are painted to convey such sensations. Their ability to trigger metaphors serves their ability to trigger feelings not the other way around. In the end, they are not pictures, but paintings-abstract paintings, meant to transcend the condition of images and provide instead the condition of sensations. To amend Stella, What you see is what you feel.

Perhaps it is not necessary to note that “sensations” and “feelings” do not connote “emotions.” Concepción’s art exists in a realm of expression at once more somatic and more conceptual than emotive. In this, her diaphanous plants, her floating worlds, her Magellanic Clouds-call them what you will-transport us not simply with their beauty, although they are capable of that, but with their various formal qualities. Their color, their grain, their patterning, their partial disembodiment, their suspension in some sort of fluid or humor-these and other plainly seen but not plainly felt factors conspire to commute sensations that beggar description.

The hundred-year history of abstract art is a history of distilling the ineffable. Whether motivated by intellectual argument or spiritual quest, the abstractionists in our midst have chosen not to depend on the recognizable world as a subject, although it remains available to them, and us, as a visual or conceptual armature; rather, it is the world inside their heads, and ours, they choose to elaborate. Michelle Concepción follows in the footsteps of Kandinsky, Malevich, Mondrian, Rothko, and a host of nonobjective painters who in their various ways have explored and conveyed what was at once deep inside them and all around them, visually inchoate but profoundly immediate in experience. When this auratic force emerges and coalesces, we tend to find the mundane world in such formulations. But even as we do, those formulations act upon us and within us. Concepción’s is an art not of things, but of their ghosts.

 

Notes
(1) Rump, Gerhard Charles. “Profundidad y transparencia en las pinturas de Michelle Concepción (Depth and Transparency On the paintings by Michelle Concepción.” Catalog Michelle Concepción Hybrids, 2006

Peter Frank is Senior Curator at Riverside Art Museum (California) and Associate Editor of THEmagazine Los Angeles. He was editor of Visions Art Quarterly in Los Angeles, where he also served as art critic for the LA Weekly for twenty years. In his native New York, Frank worked as art critic for the Village Voice and the SoHo Weekly News. He has curated shows and published books, monographs, and catalogues around the world.

Michelle Concepcion Artist Statement

I have always felt intrigued by natural forms and the beauty and mystery of the mechanisms of life, both at a macro and microscopic level. Science and discovery have also seduced me: what we can and cannot see, the tangible and intangible, the movements and synapses, the particles and the supersymmetry between forces and matter and the subtle tension it creates.

As in nature itself, my pieces explore the ephemeral, creation and destruction, beauty and mystery, motion and stillness, simplicity and complexity, chaos and order. Elements are repeated, covered up but not completely immersed into the background. Lines and drips are integrated into the composition as well as washes and transparencies - delicate enough to allow the layer beneath it to shimmer through, yet opaque enough to slightly disguise what lies underneath.

Over the years, my workspace feels more like a laboratory than an artist studio. It is here, surrounded by syringes, tape, tweezers, droppers, wooden sticks, Q-tips, glass and metal objects, where I become an alchemist who works, investigates, experiments, tests, plays, discovers and spends anywhere from several months to years to complete each piece. By observing and experimenting completely unexpected things happen. This is what guides and inspires me; it is this experience that I try to transmit to the viewer.

My work is the result of investigation, exploration and experimentation. Each painting is a link to the next, a step into a metamorphosis, into a life-long method of examination. It is an exercise in discovery, played by adding and subtracting, by erasing and going back and forth with patterns, shapes and colors, that weave in and out of one another. A momentary glimpse into something, which is mysteriously transforming into something else. They surface and disappear creating compositions that are harmonious, yet show a certain strain between the forms. Nothing stands still. Everything seems to evolve. This very open-ended state of transformation is what invites the viewer to join me in the process of discovery. Together we connect with the science and art behind the human attempt to represent and reveal more about the world and its mysterious beauty.

 

Michelle in the studio I

 

Michelle in the studio II

 

Special thanks to Oana Roseanu for directing the video and
nsi. non standard institute Tobias Freund ; Max Loderbauer  & Victor Sol for the music.