Born in 1944, Los Angeles, CA. Lives and works in New York.
Allan McCollum is a contemporary artist, born in Los Angeles, who now lives and works in New York. McCollum grew up in a family of artists, actors, and musicians, which led him to briefly pursue an acting career as young man. Attending the Los Angeles Trade Technical College while working at the Los Angeles International Airport, Fluxus writing and Sol Lewitt work retain his interest. Switching career, he took on art handling job in West Hollywood where he was introduced to the artists world including curator, gallerists as well as Ed Kienholz. In 1975, he moved to New York where he first began producing his famous serial work.
His work consists of paintings, drawings, sculptures, and multiples in order to blur the boundary between unique artefacts and mass production. Interested in how objects attain cultural value, McCollum’s Surrogate Paintingsare uniquely produced yet intended to seem manufactured, questioning both the process of labor and the value of authorship. Employing plaster, rubber, and cement, he has created sculptures resembling framed painting, fossilized bones, antique urns, and household objects.
“When I first decided to be an artist, I was interested in exploring self-referential angles on how our culture defines a painting” he reflected. “I quickly realized that a painting is ultimately defined by its context. And all contexts are within other contexts, so I’m always drawn into an ever-expanding idea of contexts”. Over the following decades, McCollum has gone on to collaborate with several artists and institutions, including Laurie Simmons, Andrea Fraser, the International Centre of Lighting Research and Testing in Florida, and the College of Eastern Utah Prehistoric Museum.
Allan McCollum’s work has been showcased in over 100 solo exhibitions at institutions including Artists Space, New York (1979-80); Portikus, Frankfurt (1988); Van Abbemuseum, Eidnhoven, Netherlands (1989); Denver Art Museum (1990); Musée d’Art Moderne de Lille Métropole, Villeneuve d’Ascq, France (1998); and Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Geneva (2006). His work was also part of 1988 Venice Biennale and So Paulo Biennale in 2008.
Hi work can be found at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, and The Museum of Contemporary Art of Los Angeles, among others around the world.
Allan McCollum currently lives and work in New York City.
Allan McCollum, Collection of 9 Perfect Vehicles, 1988, 9 parts x 52 x 24 cm