Cancelled Residences

Michael Zachary

Artist's Website

When not occupied with his work as Assistant Professor of Art at the Simmons University in Boston, Michael Zachary is creating his own works of art in his well-organised East Boston studio.

When asked about how the pandemic has impacted his life, he says:

As for many of us, the pandemic has forced me to communicate via a computer screen much more than I normally would. Lately, I have been channelling this into my studio practice and investigating whether my drawings and paintings can exist as virtual, digital environments.

Michael adapts his practice to whichever environment he finds himself in. He likes to wander, meticulously observing the details in the world around him. These details spark a desire to tell a story and serve to inspire his paintings and drawings.

I use simple, modular marks in only four different colors (CMYK) to create drawings that are much more complex than the sum of their parts. These limits provide me with a certain freedom. I’m fascinated with how our inherited conceptions (and misconceptions) about what is natural - and what is artifice - shape us. I use a representational landscape as a vehicle to explore these ideas; as a mirror reflecting our own desires, fears, and assumptions back at us, while masquerading as an objective representation.

Currently, Michael is constructing speculative virtual reality environments along with site contingent drawings, that both relate to and exist within them.

Lately, I have become increasingly interested in our relationship with technology and machines. And in the possibility that a human being is in fact a complicated machine who in turn, uses other machines. Virtual reality environments are outside the scope of my normal studio practice and definitely outside my comfort zone. That feels like a great place to explore right now.

You can have a look at Michael’s studio with a virtual tour via this link.