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 Enrique Martinez Celaya  (1964 - )

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Lived/Active: California / Cuba      Known for: installation, sculptor, conceptual

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Sculptor Enrique Calaya has a degree in physics from Cornell University, did doctoral work in physics at Berkeley, and has worked at Brookhaven Laboratory on Long Island, where he has a number of patients, and has published a number of scientific papers. 
He abandoned his studies in order to paint full time, and earned an Master of Fine Arts degree from Santa Barbara and then worked in Los Angeles for over a decade.  He recently moved to Florida where the Miami Art Museum is hosting a solo exhibit in 2007.  He is also active in the community of Aspen, Colorado. 

He also has a small press called Whale and Star,  and the University of Nebraska has announced recently that they will serve as his distributor.
In summer 2006, the Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery in Lincoln, Nebraska had an exhibition of a sculptural installation of what he called an environment,' a gift to the museum from a prominent German collector, Dieter Rosenkranz, who, in the 1950s, was the first collector to support the work of Christo.  He also supported Sam Francis, Yves Klein and Nam Jun Paik.
The Sheldon exhibition was a celebration of that gift to the permanent collection.  Included were nine photographs presented of which each of them are part of the larger series that resulted in the sculpture.  There is also a wallpaper component made by the artist specifically for this exhibition.
Dan Ladely, Curator of Sheldon Gallery and of this exhibition  said that "this exhibition is connected closely with the first exhibition he had here in 2003.  Both that paintings exhibition and this sculptural environment emerged out of a poem, called 'October' that he wrote in 1999.


This biography from the Archives of AskART:

Enrique Martínez Celaya was born in Palos, Cuba on June 9, 1964.  He began his art training as an apprentice to an academic painter at the age of eleven.  In addition to painting, he published poetry, built a laser, and received prizes from the Department of Energy and the National Congress of Science.  While attending Cornell University he chose to pursue his work in art independently, an approach he continued during his graduate studies in Quantum Electronics at the University of California, Berkeley where he was supported by a fellowship from the Brookhaven National Laboratory.

In 1994, five years after abandoning the Ph.D. program at Berkeley, he concluded his M.F.A. at the University of California, Santa Barbara, receiving the Art Affiliates Award and a department fellowship to attend the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture in Maine.  He was a tenured professor at Pomona College and the Claremont Graduate University from 1994-2003 and has received many awards and prizes including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Art Here and Now Award (1998), the Hirsch Grant (2001) and the California Community Foundation Fellowship, J. Paul Getty Trust Fund for the Visual Arts (2004).

Martínez Celaya has published and edited several books and essays of fiction, poetry, science and philosophy. Since his first show in 1995, his paintings, photographs and sculptures have been exhibited widely in the United States, Europe and Latin America, and are in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and others. In 2004 he created the first art environment ever to be shown at the Berliner Philharmonie.


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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
From Cuba, Enrique Martinez Celaya is a painter, sculptor, photographer and writer.  He had his first art exhibition in 1995 when he was 31, but began his art education at the age of 11 training as an apprentice to an academic painter.

Martinez Celaya studied at Cornell University and Quantum Electronics at the University of California at Berkeley.  However, he abandoned that program in 1989, and instead, earned an M.F.A. five years later at the University of California at Santa Barbara.  From there, he won a department Art Affiliates Award to study at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine.

From 1994-2003, he was a tenured professor at Pomona College and the Claremont Graduate University.  Awards include the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Art Here and Now Award (1998), a Hirsch Grant (2001), and J. Paul Getty Trust Fund for the Visual Arts (2004).

He has written books and essays about science and philosophy and fiction stories.

Collections include the Whitney Museum of American Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

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