Chris Engman

1978 · United States

Artist biography

Chris Engman is a mid-career contemporary visual artist, who originates from the United States, like other celebrated artists such as Ramiro Gomez, Kate Garner, Mia Pearlman, James Coleman, and Honoré Sharrer. Chris Engman was born in 1978.

About Chris Engman's works

Chris Engman's work is characteristic of the fields of Minimalism, Digital, Conceptual and Abstraction. Towards the end of the 1950s, in New York city, young artists were starting to feel disenchanted in the stagnant state of art, which led to the creation of the art movement known as Minimalism. Peaking in the 1960s, Minimalism sought to question all pre-existing conceptions one would have about art, and get rid of the gestural elements that used to be deemed as essential in previous art movements. Rather than paintings, sculptures became key elements of the movement, giving the artist with the ability to engage with their physical surroundings, thus offering the viewers a harmonious, truthful experience. The core essence of minimalism was to ground art in its own reality, removing any unessential, decorative aspect. Geometrical shapes became a key component of the genre, with an emphasis on delivering illusions of spatial depth in the artworks, while remaining clean and purified. Artists like Frank Stella, Dan Flavin or Donald Judd are critically acclaimed figures of Minimalism, and were strongly influenced by earlier European abstract movements.

Digital art can be categorized as twofold - digital technology can be the medium used to create artworks, but it can also be the end in itself. In both cases, digital art implies that computer processing is involved in the production, or presentation, of the artwork. Sometimes referred to as “new-media art”, digital art essentially defies the borders between technology and art and allows the artists a new kind of freedom, never experienced before. Digital art can also include installations, which offers the viewer an interactive experience. First introduced in the 1980s, with artists such as Harold Cohen and Andy Warhol as pioneers of the genre, digital art will keep unfolding, as technology endlessly progresses and becomes more sophisticated.

Defined as a movement in the late 1960s, simultaneously in Europe and America, Conceptual art was highly influenced by the purity of Minimalism, although it took a step further in rejecting all pre-existing conceptions one would have about art. Defining Conceptual art can be complex, as the boundaries are not clearly defined, and constantly shifting. The artworks can take the form of almost anything, but the core idea remains the same - the strategies and concepts behind the art are more important than the finished artwork itself. The conceptual artists use a variety of materials and forms to freely explore the multitude of possibilities through which they want to convey their message. Some of the most prominent figures of Conceptualism include artists such as Sol LeWitt, Lawrence Weiner and Yoko Ono. French artist Marcel Duchamp is considered to be the forefather of Conceptualism, with his artwork Fontaine, where he famously tried to blur the line between art and reality.

Abstract art first started to emerge in the early 20th century, as a new and rather radical form of art. Artists were looking for a way of expressing the societal changes occurring at the time, and release their creative energy, thus distancing themselves from figurative art. With abstraction, the artists distance themselves from any literal representation of reality, and the visual qualities often put in focus in such non-representative works are colours, shapes and textures. Some of the most influential contemporary art movements born from Abstraction include Cubism, Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism, with key figures such as Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Jackson Pollock. With abstract art, a sense of self-renewing freedom is materialising through the artworks, in a new tradition of creativity.

Galleries and Exhibitions

Chris Engman's work is on display in 3 galleries around the world, in countries like the United States and Germany. Some of those galleries are Luis De Jesus Los Angeles in the United States, as well as Galerie Kornfeld and 68projects in Germany. Chris Engman's most recent exhibition recorded on Artland was at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles in the United States with the exhibition Looking. The exhibition was open from 25 April 2020 until 20 June 2020. Chris Engman's only other recorded exhibition on Artland is Refraction, which took place at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles in the United States (15 February 2019 - 22 March 2019).

Historical Context of United States

The United States has been key in the evolution of modern and contemporary art in the twentieth century, especially in the post war era, when the cultural prominence of New York assumed primacy over Paris, previously thought of as the most significant art hub in the world.

Leading art movements developed and fostered in important ways throughout the United States include Abstract Expressionism in varied forms, Pop Art, including its West and East Coast variants, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Neo-Expressionism, Graffiti and Street Art, plus a multitude of post-modern iterations of these many movements. In the modern and contemporary period, the United States has exercised a powerful influence upon the international visual culture, due to the authority of its economic and political structures. Key examples of world renowned U.S artists of the modern and contemporary era include Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Frank Stella, Donald Judd, Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, Julian Schnabel, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring.

Further Biographical Context for Chris Engman

Chris Engman was born in 1978 and was largely influenced by the 1980s growing up. The 1980s were an era of increasing global capitalism, political upheaval, global mass media, wealth discrepancies and distinctive music and fashion, characterised by hip hop and electronic pop music. This had a heavy impact on the generation of artists growing up during this time.

The fall of the Berlin Wall at the end of the 1980s signified the end of the Cold War, yet the era was also distinguished by the African Famine. During this time prominent art movements included Neo Geo, The Pictures Generation and Neo-Expressionism, which took a strong hold in Germany, France and Italy. Artists such as Anselm Kiefer, Jörg Immendorf, Enzo Cucchi, Francesco Clemente and Julian Schnabel were leading artists working during this period, alongside Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf, who established the street art and graffiti movements, which quickly gained an influential reputation.

Chris Engman

  • Exhibitions 2
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