Miami, b.1973

José Parlá

Born in Miami to Cuban parents, José Parlá spent his childhood in Puerto Rico before returning with his family to Miami in the 1980s where, as a teenager, he took part in the city’s underground art scene. Moving to New York in his early twenties, Parlá continued to develop his signature abstract style, informed by his studies of historical landscape painting and Abstract Expressionism.

The idiosyncratic calligraphic markings that became an identifying feature of his paintings evolved out of subway art and were influenced by the varied scripts, symbols, and glyphs he encountered during his travels to the Middle East, Asia, and Latin America. His artworks tell stories of immigrant roots, city wanderings and human encounters which reference personal histories while also leaving room for his viewers to find their...

learn more about this artist

Biography

Born in Miami to Cuban parents, José Parlá spent his childhood in Puerto Rico before returning with his family to Miami in the 1980s where, as a teenager, he took part in the city’s underground art scene. Moving to New York in his early twenties, Parlá continued to develop his signature abstract style, informed by his studies of historical landscape painting and Abstract Expressionism.

The idiosyncratic calligraphic markings that became an identifying feature of his paintings evolved out of subway art and were influenced by the varied scripts, symbols, and glyphs he encountered during his travels to the Middle East, Asia, and Latin America. His artworks tell stories of immigrant roots, city wanderings and human encounters which reference personal histories while also leaving room for his viewers to find their own stories. Spanning the last five years of the artist’s practice, the works presented across two locations weave together the stories of Parlá’s recent past and explore the collective memories of the world through which he travels.

José Parlá is a critically acclaimed, multidisciplinary artist working in painting, large-scale murals, photography, video, and sculpture. Parlá studied at Miami Dade Community College, Miami, FL; New World School of the Arts, Miami, FL; and Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD), Savannah, GA. Parlá's work has been exhibited at the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA; SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah College of Art & Design, Savannah, GA; Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY; National YoungArts Foundation, Miami, FL; Van Every/Smith Galleries, Davidson College, Davidson, NC; and the Havana Biennial, Havana, Cuba among others. Parlá's work is in several public collections including the British Museum, London; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; POLA Museum of Art, Hakone, Japan; and the National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana. Permanent public arts projects include a commission by ONE WORLD TRADE CENTER, New York, NY, for his monumental mural painting, ONE: Union of the Senses, the largest painting of its kind in New York City, in the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere; Barclays Center, New York, NY; Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York, NY; André Balazs' Chiltern Firehouse, London; North Carolina State University's Hunt Library by SNØHETTA; and Concord City Place, Toronto. Upcoming exhibitions include solo exhibitions Isthmus, at Istanbul’74 a project of the Istanbul Biennial and It’s Yours, for The Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York, NY curated by Manon Slome (PhD)

Artworks

9

Anywhere Fragment, 2019

Related Categories

21st Century Art / Abstract Painting / Abstraction / Acrylic Paint / American Art / Art of the 2010s / Calligraphy / Canvas / Collage / Collective Memories / Contemporary American Art / Immigration / Inspired by Abstract Expressionism / Learning from Different Cultures / Link to the City / Miami / Mixed Media Art / Mixed Media Painting / Mixed Media Sculpture / Oil Paint / Painting / Recycled Materials / Rough and Brave Brushstrokes / Sculpture / Social Issues / Street Art / Surrounding Environment / Textured Surface / United States / Urban Landscape

Curriculum Vitae

Education

  • Miami Dade Community College

  • Savannah College of Art & Design, Georgia

  • New World School of the Arts, Miami

Selected Solo Exhibitions

  • 2020

    The Bronx Museum of Art, New York City, NY

  • 2019

    Textures of Memory, HOCA Foundation, Hong Kong

  • Textures of Memory, Ben Brown Fine Arts, Hong Kong

Selected Group Exhibitions

  • 2019

    Glasstress 2019, Fondazione Berengo Art Space, Murano

  • Beyond the Streets, 25 Kent Ave., Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY

  • 2017

    Victors for Art, U-M Museum of Art, University of Michigan, MI

view full CV

Curriculum Vitae

The artist CV shows the details after 2000s.
To access the artist’s full CV, please click the download button at the end.

Education

  • Miami Dade Community College

  • Savannah College of Art & Design, Georgia

  • New World School of the Arts, Miami

Selected Solo Exhibitions

  • 2020

    The Bronx Museum of Art, New York City, NY

  • 2019

    Textures of Memory, HOCA Foundation, Hong Kong

  • Textures of Memory, Ben Brown Fine Arts, Hong Kong

  • Anonymous Vernacular, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York, NY

  • Isthmus, Istanbul ’74, Istanbul

  • 2018

    Echo of Impressions, Ben Brown Fine Arts, London

  • No Space / Non Place, Neuberger Museum of Art, SPACE | 42, New York, NY

  • 2017

    Roots, SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah College of Art & Design, Savannah, GA

  • Mirrors, Brand New Gallery, Milan

  • ONE: Union of the Sense I Mono Transfers, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2016

    Instincts, Goss-Michael Foundation, Dallas, TX

  • Small Golden Suns, Yuka Tsuruno Gallery, Tokyo

  • Roots, National Young Arts Foundation, Miami, FL

  • 2015

    Surface Body Action Space, Mary Boone Gallery, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2014

    Segmented Realities, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA

  • In Medias Res, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2013

    Prose, Yuka Tsuruno Gallery, Tokyo

  • Broken Language, Haunch of Venison, London

  • 2012

    Gesture Performing Dance, Dance Performing Gesture, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), New York, NY

  • Bam Fisher - Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York, NY

  • 2011

    Character Gestures, OHWOW gallery, Los Angeles, CA

  • Walls, Diaries, and Paintings, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2009

    Reading through Seeing: New Works, Ooi Botos Gallery, Hong Kong

  • 2008

    Layered Days, Cristina Grajales, Inc. New York, NY

  • Adaptation / Translation, Elms Lesters Painting Rooms, London

  • 2007

    The Grand Tour, Autopsy Gallery, Melbourne

  • The Elsewhere Community, Monster Children Gallery, Sydney

  • 2006

    Cityscapes, Curated by Manon Slome Miami Beach, FL

  • The Mystic Writing Pad, Koehler Gallery, Whitworth College, Spokane, WA

  • 2005

    Autonomous Paths, Kinsey/DesForges Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

  • Contemporary Palimpsests, Refill Gallery, Sydney

  • 2004

    Hyphens: Miami, New York, Habana, Prophecy Gallery, New York, NY

  • 2003

    Bizen Yaki Engravings, BAL gallery, Okayama

  • 2002

    Identidad en Progreso, Carlos Irizarry Gallery, San Juan

  • Personal Alphabet, Yamaha Gallery, Tokyo

  • 2000

    An Experimental Introduction to a Segmented Reality, Modern Primitive Gallery, Atlanta, GA

Selected Group Exhibitions

  • 2019

    Glasstress 2019, Fondazione Berengo Art Space, Murano

  • Beyond the Streets, 25 Kent Ave., Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY

  • 2017

    Victors for Art, U-M Museum of Art, University of Michigan, MI

  • 2016

    Post No Bills: Public Walls as Studio and Source, Neuberger Museum of Art Purchase College, NY

  • Seeing I Saying: Images and Words, Vann Every Gallery, Davidson College, NC

  • 2015

    Imagining New Worlds: Wifredo Lam, José Parlá, Fahamu Pecou, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA

  • 2012

    Wrinkles of the City, Havana Cuba screening - 11th Havana Biennial, JR & JOSE PARLA, Havana

  • Legal Tender, Martha Otero Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

  • 2010

    The New Grand Tour, Bryce Wolkowitz, New York, NY

  • It Ain’t Fair, O.H.W.O.W., Art Basel Miami Beach, FL

  • 2009

    The Kings County Biennial, Curated by James Fuentes, Kidd Yellin Gallery, Brooklyn, New York, NY

  • Stages (Live Strong Foundation), O.H.W.O.W., Miami; Deitch Projects, New York, NY; Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, Paris

  • The New Yorkers, Curated by Todd James and Mikkel Groennebaek V1 Gallery, Copenhagen

  • 2008

    The New Grand Tour, DNA Space, Dashanzi Art District, Beijing

  • Hi & Lo, Curated by Takashi Murakami and Hiroshi Fujiwara, Kai Kai Ki Ki Gallery, Tokyo

  • 2007

    The New Grand Tour, Hong Kong

  • Pirate Utopias - Futura and Jose Parla, Elms Lesters Painting Rooms, London

  • 2004

    Hollywood to the Street: From the Poster to Graffiti (w/ Mimmo Rotella), Curated by Manon Slome, Chelsea Art Museum, New York, NY

  • The Barnstormers: Retrospective, Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art (SECCA), Winston-Salem, NC

  • 2003

    What about New York?, Galerie du Jour - Agnès B, Paris

Commissions

  • 2018

    Landmarks, The University of Texas, Austin, TX

  • 2014

    One World Trade Center, New York, NY

  • 2013

    Hunt Library by SNØHETTA, North Carolina State University, NC

  • 2012

    BAM FISHER, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), New York, NY

  • Wrinkles of the City-Havana, 11th Havana Biennial, Havana

  • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, NY

  • 2010

    Concord CityPlace, City of Toronto, ON

Grants/Awards

  • 2016

    Miami Dade College Alumni Hall of Fame Award Inductee

  • 2014

    Istanbul74’ Arts & Culture Festival, Istanbul Brooklyn Arts Council honoree Caldera Arts at Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR

  • 2013

    ICA Institure of Contemporary Arts, London

  • Centro de Arte Contemporáneo, Wifredo Lam, Havana

  • Latin American Culture Center, Paris

  • Grand Prize, Best Documentary Short

  • Best U.S. Premiere, Heartland Film Festival

  • For Wrinkles of the City, Havana

  • 2009

    Artist talk-Painting Program, Syracuse University, New York, NY

  • 2006

    Koehler Gallery, Whitworth College Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture, Spokane, WA

Collections

  • Caldera Arts, Portland Oregon, OR

  • London Business School, London

  • Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger Collection, Dallas, TX

  • POLA Museum of Art, Hakone

  • The Albright-Knox, Buffalo, New York, NY

  • The British Museum, London

  • The Burger Collection, Hong Kong

  • The National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana

  • University of Texas, Austin