“Los Angeles artist Sandow Birk is a well-traveled graduate of the Otis/Parson's Art Institute. Frequently developed as expansive, multi-media projects, his works have dealt with contemporary life in its entirety. With an emphasis on social issues, frequent themes of his past work have included inner city violence, graffiti, political issues, travel, war, and prisons, as well as surfing and skateboarding. He was a recipient of an NEA International Travel Grant to Mexico City in 1995 to study mural painting, a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1996, and a Fulbright Fellowship for painting to Rio de Janeiro for 1997. In 1999 he was awarded a Getty Fellowship for painting, followed by a City of Los Angeles (COLA) Fellowship in 2001. In 2007 he was an artist in residence at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC, and at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris in 2008. His most recent project involves a consideration of the Qur’an as relevant to contemporary life in America.
Birk and his wife, practicing artist Elyse Pignolet, often produce works together, including a series titled “The 99 Names of God.” In 2012, SFJAZZ Theater (San Francisco, California) commissioned American Idioms, a series of murals by Birk and Pignolet.
Sandow is represented by the Koplin del Rio Gallery in Los Angeles, Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco, and P.P.O.W. Gallery in New York City.
Born: 1962, Detroit, Michigan, United States"