Long Island Artist Colin Goldberg Awarded Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant

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Long Island artist Colin Goldberg has been awarded a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. His artwork, which explores the intersection of technology and abstraction, has been exhibited at museums, galleries and art fairs across the United States.

I would find it irresponsible as an artist not to fully embrace the tools of our time, namely, the computer.

Long Island artist Colin Goldberg (b.1971, Bronx NY) has been awarded a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. Grants are awarded to professional visual artists internationally, based on dual criteria of artistic merit and financial need. Pollock-Krasner grants have enabled artists to create new work, purchase needed materials and pay for studio rent, as well as their personal and medical expenses.

The Pollock-Krasner Foundation functions as the official Estate for both Lee Krasner and Jackson Pollock, and also, under the terms of Ms. Krasner's will, serves "to assist individual working artists of merit with financial need." In 2012, The Foundation awarded 159 grants totaling $2,325,500 to visual artists and organizations internationally. Since its inception in 1985, the Foundation has awarded over 58 million dollars to artists in 75 countries.

Colin Goldberg lives and works in Orient, New York with his wife Donna. Orient is a historic village located on the North Fork of Long Island's East End, located about 100 miles east of New York City. The East End of Long Island is an area steeped in artistic tradition. Jackson Pollock (1912-1956) and his wife Lee Krasner (1908-1984) lived and worked across Peconic Bay in the hamlet of Springs. After moving there from New York in 1945, they were soon followed by other prominent Abstract Expressionist painters such as Willem de Kooning (1904-1997). Goldberg is an East End native, graduating from Southampton High School in 1990.

The artist was introduced to the ideas of the Abstract Expressionists firsthand by his undergraduate painting instructor Angelo Ippolito (1922-2001). Ippolito, a well-respected New York School painter, left his native Italy at an early age, soon attaining prominence in the city's burgeoning downtown art scene. When questioned on the meaning behind his work, Ippolito explained to his students that his work was "about paint." Goldberg, who also gravitated to New York's East Village after his schooling, explains his reaction to his professor's statement:

"Ippolito’s explanation of his work was liberating and it resonated with my appreciation of Marshall McLuhan's idea that 'the medium is the message.' It wasn’t until I began to integrate technology into my practice that I truly started to explore abstraction. Working with computers has allowed my work to become much more experimental, freeing me from the need to base my imagery on preconceived subject matter or any particular theoretical agenda. My parents, both chemists by training, probably also subconsciously influenced me in adopting this experimental approach. Ultimately, about 20 years ago, I made the decision that I would find it irresponsible as an artist not to fully embrace the tools of our time, namely, the computer."

Much of Goldberg's artwork combines traditional and digital art making techniques. Helen Harrison, Director of the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center, described Goldberg's work in a catalog introduction she wrote for his 2011 solo exhibition entitled ‘Techspressionism’:

"Like Goldberg’s, Pollock’s path to an individual creative language involved a synthesis of past and present, taking from each what was appropriate for his purposes.... As Pollock once remarked, 'technique is just a means of arriving at a statement.'"

In addition to the influence of the abstract artists of the past, Goldberg's cultural background has also played a role in the development of his aesthetic sensibilities. Kimiye Ebisu, Goldberg's maternal grandmother, studied and taught Shodo, the art of Japanese calligraphy, throughout her life in Honolulu. The artist states:

"My grandmother's mastery of Shodo brought an appreciation of the gestural mark to my work. I remember hearing stories from my mother about how Kimiye would sit at the kitchen table late into the night, writing a single Kanji character, then crumpling it up and repeating this process for hours until the result was to her satisfaction. This story taught me the lesson that artistic labor might not be immediately evident in beauty which is apparently simple on a surface level."

Goldberg's work resides in the permanent collection of the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in Springs, New York and in many private and corporate collections throughout the country. He has exhibited at the New York Armory, and at museums, galleries and art fairs across the United States. The artist holds a BA in Studio Art from Binghamton University and an MFA in Computer Art from Bowling Green State University. His current representation includes Yes Gallery in Brooklyn, NY, The South Street Gallery in Greenport, NY and the Hudson Gallery in Sylvania, Ohio. More information on Colin Goldberg and his work is available online at ColinGoldberg.com.

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