Richard Monge was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He was educated at the University of Puerto Rico in Rio Piedras and went on to study at Pratt Institute in New York in 1992, working toward a Master in Fine Arts. Living in New York and London in the 1990s fostered an experimental attitude that attracted Monge to work in a variety of media -video, photography, printing, painting, and computer graphic design-, ultimately integrating these into his own creative language. Monge’s repository of data evolves from the heterogeneous nature of the contemporary experience, addressing the challenges of the inadequacy of figuration and what it means to be an artist in today’s rapidly changing world.
Monge asserts his subjectivity by resisting categorization. Following an invitation by The Skopelos Foundation for the Arts (Skopelos, Greece) in 1999, which prompted a “unique sense of freedom and timelessness”, and moved personally by the unfortunate death of his father, Monge’s “Iconographic Patterns” series incorporated elements of Byzantine iconography and expressed abstract emotional states, which imply existential responses to the human condition.
Monge depicts ideas not explicitly, but implies them through subtle hints and allusions, creating an ambiguous collage of fragments and details. Monge’s range of imagery deals fundamentally with the subject matter of identity (ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, childhood, class), shaped by an individual perspective. His work is deeply influenced by personal memories, dreams, and a cosmogony that explores ornamentation and kitsch.
His work has been shown at various private and institutional galleries in New York, Boston, Chicago and SanJuan, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Santiago de Chile, the Skopelos Fundation in Greece, the Majdanek State Museum in Lublin, the Aleksandr Art Centre in Uzbekistan, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in London and most recently in the Centro Cultural Pablo de la Torriente Brau in Cuba.
Richard Monge went back to the Skopelos Foundation for the Arts in Greece (www.skopart.org) for an Art residency in October 2004, conceptualizing his new body of work entitled “The Garden of the Ednas”. This series was presented in September 2005 in Space Other, Boston MA (www.spaceother.org).
Monge currently lives in New York City.
Richard Monge participates in
curated by Wilfried Agricola de Cologne