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Dan Colen

American  •  b. 1979

Biography

American artist Dan Colen has spent most of his career asking himself questions about the editorial decisions artists have to make when creating a scene from scratch on canvas. In his early work, Colen painted mundane interiors punctuated with fantastical elements. This manifested as part of a growing curiosity in the ethereal or divine intervention.

Colen subsequently stepped away from paint as material and started using found objects as mediums with which to paint. Among these, Colen has used chewing gum, street trash, confetti, feathers, flowers and dirt. This methodology allows Colen to abandon control and create in a more free-form, subconscious manner.

Insights

  • Dan Colen is represented by Gagosian.

  • His work is featured in several public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, de la Cruz Collection Contemporary Art Space, Miami and Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, among others. 

"At the end of the day, you can't have a vision; you have to have a hope. This is where the miracle comes in."

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