One of his subjects is the formation of crystals. As I was looking at some of this work, he mentioned a mine in upstate NY associated with these quartz crystals- Herkimer. I mentioned I knew of it as I grew up near Ithaca. Turns out, so did he! Later in the visit I noticed a Fred Tomaselli book on his desk and mentioned that I loved his work and that he had spoken at Bard when I attended. Come to find out he has taught at Bard.
The lst opening of his that I made it to in the city was breath-taking. I was absorbing everything when I noticed a fellow Bard alum from my grad year. I talked to him a bit to find out that he & MJ went to Columbia together. Fucking small, small world.
Okay, so there's the background of our meeting. Michael has also been a huge proponent and buyer of my work. He rocks it all over the globe! It makes me feel especially great to have a such a badass artist wearing my shit!
We'd been talking about hooking up again for ages, but just hadn't found the time until last night. He came into town lugging a keg of Sixpoint Brooklyn Red. This was for the three of us to drink, mind you. Having sat for 5 hours getting a chest piece, this seemed like a good idea. So after swilling copious amounts of the stuff, we headed out to dinner in New Haven. I knew 116 Crown had great drinks and figured they probably had some decent food. I decided we needed some 'Angel's Milk'. This consisted of two double vodka martinis with 2 sides of pineapple juice and a piece of toast, apparently WC Fields breakfast of choice. I was disappointed they were out of the bone marrow appetizer, but that was probably for the best. We had some little niblets and another round of those two rounded off martini glasses and we were on our way. We went home and proceeded to get shit hammered on the kegger and had an incredible time hanging out talking about the art world, life, and guns.
The zebra in this one is epoxy, urethane, etc, but he has also done a life size one in solid bronze.
This is a part of his huge series, 'improved racks'.
This is from Mike's salt series....top image is Salt Desert in Utah....center is Mike as a salt lick for elks in the mountains of South Korea. Bottom image is in MJ's studio filled with MSG.
Born in Ithaca, New York in 1966, Joo obtained a BFA from Washington University in 1989, followed by an MFA in Sculpture from Yale University in 1991. In 1994 his work was included in the internationally acclaimed group show, ‘Some Went Mad, Some Ran Away’, curated by Damien Hirst for the Serpentine Gallery. His artwork is included in the collections of such international institutions as the Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Joo has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions worldwide, including the Venice Biennale, 1993 and 2001, Whitney Biennial, NY, 2000, Anton Kern Gallery, NY, 2002, the Bohen Foundation, NY, 2005, Rodin Gallery, Seoul, 2006, Milan Triennale Bovisa, 2006, Denver Art Museum, 2006 and the Gwangju Biennale, South Korea 2006 where he was co-recipient of the Grand Prize for his installation, ‘Bodhi Obfuscatus…’
To learn more about Michael Joo: http://www.antonkerngallery.com/artist.php?aid=16