Mel Bochner was born in Pittsburgh, PA in 1940 and lives and works in New York, NY. He received a BFA degree with a major in painting and a minor in philosophy from the Carnegie Institute of Technology, Pittsburgh, PA in 1962. He taught aesthetics, art history and sculpture at the School of Visual Arts, New York, NY from 1965-1972 and in 2001 he was the Adjunct Professor at Yale University, New Haven, CT. His first one-man exhibition was held at the School of Visual Arts Gallery, New York, NY in 1966. In 2018 he participated in the 57th Edition of the Carnegie International, Pittsburgh, PA.
Throughout his career, the artist has explored the intersection of linguistic and visual representation. The overriding question at the heart of his project has always been the same – How do we receive and interpret different types of information? He started to find clear ways of looking at art and to question how we experience depth, perspective and space. He went on to explore language and colour in the same way. His influential critical and theoretical essays on art have figured as a central component to his oeuvre.
“My feeling was that there were ways of extending, or re-inventing visual experience, but that it was very important that it remain visual,” – he reflected on introducing text into his work – “the viewer should enter the idea through a visual or phenomenological experience rather than simply reading it.”
His work is included in major public and private collections internationally, including Tate, London, UK; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Städel Museum, Frankfurt, Germany; Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Montreal, Canada; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, NY; National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA; Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles, CA and Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles, CA.