Michael Murphy’s sophisticated conceptual approach to creation is evident in his constant search for new and innovative methods of artistic practice. The artist’s virtuosity spans a staggering range of media: sculpture, drawing, painting, sound and installation. Fascinated with light, color, tone and shape, Murphy strives to challenge the boundaries between the second and third dimensions, with optical illusions often employed to this end. Works such as Red Cross appear as if they are flat planes from a distance however, when viewed from a closer standpoint, become symbol rich, three-dimensional objects.
Given the conceptual scope of the works, Murphy considers each of his pieces to be independent entities and eschews working in series. With each work created, the artist will experiment with a new medium, adventurously fusing more classical art making techniques with digital processes and manual skills.
Portraiture plays an important role in the artist’s oeuvre. Murphy is capable of imbuing his subjects with profound psychological intensity. The artist’s wire portrait of President Barack Obama was received to critical acclaim and was featured in TIME magazine’s December 2008 issue. Iris, a nail and shadow portrait depicting a young girl, delicately echoes the girl’s personality traits in its formal properties.
To celebrate the exhibition launch, Murphy will stage an exceptional performance in Washington Square Park. In conjunction with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation the work, a sound and light installation, will incorporate a cellist playing both classical and more contemporary compositions. Surrounded by shallow pools, the ripples produced in the water by the music’s vibrations will be projected onto the Washington Square Arch in a dazzling spectacle of light and sound.
The artist has exhibited widely throughout the United States. Most recently, Murphy participated in the widely publicized Re:Form School exhibition in New York City alongside works by Shepard Fairey, Swoon and Ron English.
Murphy has been featured in numerous publications including TIME Magazine, New York Magazine, American Artist’s Uptown Magazine, and Washington Life. His works are held in private collections in Munich, London, Zurich, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New York City, Chicago, Cleveland and Washington DC.