Michael Marks was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and spent his formative years growing up in rural Georgia. In eighth grade he acquired a set of oil paints from his grandmother, a MAD magazine from an older cousin, and took a computer coding class at an after school program. He has lived most of his artistic life between these experiences. Later, he received his BA from Georgia College and State University and MFA from Clemson University.
Marks was a co-founder and director of the ThreeCitiesGroup artist collective, active for nearly a decade across the Southeast. Working across a range of materials and techniques, his creative work has been shown nationally and internationally in over eighty exhibitions in twenty states; in US cities including New York, Atlanta, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Saint Louis, Austin, and Chicago, and internationally in Copenhagen, Prague, and Perth. His writings on contemporary art and education have been published by Temporary Art Review and the Paris College of Art Press. He serves on the board of FATE (Foundations in Art: Theory and Education) as editor of FATE In Review, an academic journal focused on arts education and visual culture. Marks is an Associate Professor of Art and Chair of The Department of Art + Design at the South Carolina School of the Arts.
My work reflects my role as a consumer and producer of images in the twenty-first century. I use a wide variety of materials including: painting, drawing, installation, and virtual reality software to create immersive visual experiences. These works blend imagery and techniques from both high and low art sources, often assimilating the visual languages of classical painting, animation, illustration, and comics into singular or site-specific works.
The works are a sort of reverse-history painting, with deconstructed and distorted realities that traverse themes of science fiction, changes in the natural world, symbols of permanence, puzzles, and my role as an artist in society. They are captive moments that both reveal and obscure meaning while celebrating their own illusion. Within this assortment of images and environments, I invite viewers to contemplate and explore the collection of narratives present in these visual possibilities by re-imagining the classical through a contemporary lens. What will our society be remembered for after we’re gone? What will we leave behind, when we are left to float in the void of space or the memories of others?
104 Midland St
Greenville SC 29607
+1 478. 230. 3284