Mel Bochner, born in 1940 in America, stands as a pioneering figure in Conceptual Art, having shaped many techniques embraced by subsequent Conceptual and Installation artists. Bochner’s artistic journey commenced during high school under the mentorship of Joseph Fitzpatrick, known for nurturing young artistic talent. He pursued art education at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburg, PA, graduating in 1962. Briefly delving into philosophy, Bochner attended Northwestern University in Chicago, IL.

In 1964, he relocated to New York, initially working as a guard at the Jewish Museum. Subsequently, he seized an opportunity to teach art history at the School of Visual Arts, marking his debut exhibition in 1966 with “Working Drawings And Other Visible Things On Paper Not Necessarily Meant To Be Viewed As Art.” This showcase, comprising photocopies of his friends’ working drawings, encapsulated the essence of Conceptual Art, prioritizing conceptual presentation over traditional artistic form. Bochner’s teaching career flourished, assuming roles such as senior critic in painting and printmaking at Yale University in 1979 and adjunct professor in 2001.

During the 1970s, Bochner transitioned to painting, exploring vibrant colors and textual elements while maintaining a conceptual undertone. His artistic repertoire embraced diverse mediums, ranging from oil on velvet to chalk on the floor. Bochner’s works have graced numerous exhibitions, including the retrospective “Mel Bochner: Thought Made Visible 1966–1973” at the Yale University Art Gallery in 1995, later adapted into a book. In 2011, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., hosted another retrospective, “In the Tower: Mel Bochner.” His written contributions to art include “Solar System & Rest Rooms: Writings and Interviews, 1965–2007.” Bochner’s artistic representation spans galleries in New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Rome, and New York.

Presently, Bochner resides and creates in New York, shaping the discourse of contemporary art.

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