Mark Mizgala was born in Montreal in 1963 and graduated from OCAD University in 1987 where he was awarded full scholarship for three consecutive years. In his graduating year Mark Mizgala was the recipient of the prestigious Ontario College of Art Medal. After attending the School for the Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University, Mark Mizgala began working in Vancouver as an advertising art director and went on to win numerous international awards for creative excellence, including Cannes, The New York One Show, Communication Arts Magazine and Archive Magazine. Mark Mizgala's photographs and paintings are in collections throughout North America and Europe.
I recently started a figurative series in oils, returning to an earlier project entitled Life on Earth. I deliberately blur the lines between age, race, gender and nationality. Mark Mizgala
I am fascinated by material gleaned from lane ways and back alleys. I am struck by the care with which waste is placed, piled and fastened. I photographed detritus with a rangefinder camera over a six year period, culminating in this series of rephotographed assemblages. In these works, entitled Mobile, I investigate the perpetual consumption cycle under advanced capitalism. My plastic bundles, which resemble smartphone devices, concern the production, circulation and consumption of photographs specifically and address consumer culture in general. Mark Mizgala
I found out this week I was awarded a BC Arts Council Grant for my forthcoming Shift series. Here is a sneak preview. The project commemorates the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, and anticipates a future where humans and nature find greater harmony. Mark Mizgala
I have been creating mock archeological findings as commentary on the food and beverage industry. I draw attention to post-consumer waste by conflating modern containers with ancient clay vessels. I photographed these Remains against clean white backgrounds to resemble advertisements. I displayed them in Vancouver bus shelters in December 2012 in collaboration with the Grunt Gallery. Presented as such, the artifacts came full circle: from the consumer, to the earth, then back to the consumer as objects of fetishized desire in bus shelters. Mark Mizgala
I'm fascinated by Vancouver's living history, it's liminal spaces and the stories contained therein. Since moving to a studio near the Downtown Eastside in 2010, I have been documenting discarded personal effects, detritus and trash receptacles. I either diminish or frame out the human figure in my photographs, however there is a constant sense of our presence and our propensity for consumption: items are endlessly disposed, dumped or decommissioned. I view garbage as a metaphor for life’s state of flux: everything around us is a work in progress.
While I am critical of existence under advanced capitalism, my images are tempered with humour. I am struck by enigmas and incongruities – quiet affirmations of life’s absurdity and hope in the face of adversity. Despite environmental, political and social challenges, I have a cautious optimism about the future of our species and our capacity for change. Mark Mizgala
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