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2016 Driskell Prize Winner: Mark Bradford

Mark Bradford headshotBased in Los Angeles, Bradford is known for his monumental, abstract collage works, which feature intricately layered forms and lines created using found materials such as string, carbon paper and billboard paper. In his paintings, installations and sculptures, Bradford explores how socioeconomic and political forces converge to shape the diverse culture and physical environments of urban communities. Bradford’s work has been featured in more than 40 solo exhibitions over the past two decades and is included in the collections of distinguished institutions such as The Guggenheim, the Walker Art Center and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Bradford was born in 1961 in Los Angeles, where he currently lives and works. He graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, Calif., in 1997.

Bradford has shown extensively in international and national exhibitions. Recent solo shows include Scorched Earth, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2015); Sea Monsters, Gemeentemuseum den Haag, The Hague, Netherlands (2015) and The Rose Art Museum, Waltham, Mass. (2014); MATRIX 172, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, Conn. (2015); Tears of a Tree, Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai, China (2015); and a major touring exhibition presented at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio (2010), which travelled to Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2010), Dallas Museum of Art (2011), Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2011) and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, (2012).

Bradford is co-founder of Art + Practice, an arts and education private operating foundation based in Leimert Park, Los Angeles. Since its founding in 2013, the foundation’s mandate has been to create an educational platform that supports the acquisition of practical skills for foster youth and stresses the cultural importance of art within a larger social context.

In addition to receiving the Driskell Prize, Bradford has earned numerous awards and fellowships, including the MacArthur Fellowship (2009), the Wexner Center Residency Award (2009), the Bucksbaum Award (2006), the United States Artists Fellowship (2006), the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award (2003), the Nancy Graves Foundation Grant (2002), and the Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant (2002). In 2013, Bradford was elected as a National Academician by the National Academy Museum and School of Fine Arts in New York. In 2014, he was a recipient of the U.S. Department of State’s Medal of Arts.


Learn more about the David C. Driskell Prize and other previous winners.