Miya Ando is an American artist known for her metal paintings that encapsulate both ephemerality and permanence. A descendant of Bizen sword makers, Miya Ando spent her childhood among Buddhist priests in a temple in Okayama, Japan, and later, in California. She combines the traditional techniques of her ancestry with modern industrial technology, skillfully transforming sheets of metal into ephemeral, abstract paintings suffused with color. Working across two and three dimensions, Ando’s oeuvre contains abstract painting and sculpture, including large-scale public art pieces that reflect the transitory essence of life.
A practicing Buddhist, Ando imbues her work with principles of her practice, with a focus on the interconnectedness of the viewer and the artwork, and among viewers themselves. The pieces exist as conduits for human experience, bringing people together to perceive each in their own way. Ando’s practice is built on the experiential qualities of her output. Viewers are meant to move around each of her works, interacting with them from different vantage points as a way to change their perceptions with respect to light, distance and time. Drawing from these philosophical underpinnings, Ando pays acute attention to how light is expressed in space and seamlessly transfers her observations to her art.
Ando constantly refines her work to remove any extraneous elements until the core of the piece remains. This distillation marks her artworks as Post Minimalist, though she does not merely recreate the tenets of this movement through her paintings, objects and installations, but acts from the same sources of inspiration and creativity.
Blending the natural with the industrial, Ando utilizes the enduring materiality of metal with evanescent scenes of the environment. Her self-developed process of painting into the surface of the aluminum creates tranquil, mutable scenes of the atmosphere. Ando applies heat, sandpaper, grinders, acid and patinas to the metal canvases, irrevocably altering the material’s chemical properties. Her glass sculptures capture cloud formations through infinitesimal fractures within. Beauty can always be found in these fleeting, temporary moments of existence.
Ando’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions, including at The Noguchi Museum, New York; Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Museum, Savannah, Georgia; The Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, New York; and the American University Museum, Washington D.C. Her work has also been included in extensive group exhibitions at institutions such as Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), California; Bronx Museum and Queens Museum of Art, New York; and The Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, New York. In 2015, her work was exhibited in Frontiers Reimagined at the 56th Venice Biennale.
Ando’s work is included in the public collections of Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Detroit Institute of Arts Museum (DIA), Luft Museum in Germany, as well as numerous private collections. She has been the recipient of several grants and awards, including the prestigious Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant Award.
Miya Ando has produced several public commissions, most notably a thirty-foot-tall sculpture in London built from World Trade Center steel to mark the ten-year anniversary of 9/11, for which she was nominated for a DARC Award in Best Light Art Installation, as well as for The Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut, designed by renowned architect Philip Johnson, which is now a museum and National Historic Landmark.
Born in Los Angeles, 1973 | Lives and works in New York