Michael Reeder was born in Dallas, Texas in 1982, where he grew up influenced by the local skate and street culture. Drawing and painting in traditional mediums from a young age, Reeder found himself drawn to the underground, unseen, yet very public form of painting graffiti. He later moved to New York City where he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting from the School of Visual Arts. Post-college, Michael took a job with Eyecon Studios in Dallas, Texas and learned to paint large-scale, traditional murals. These experiences fused with his early graffiti influence formed and grew into his portraiture work today.
Reeder’s current work commands attention through the use of bold color, graphic geometric patterns and realism. His portrait work is heavy, steeped in solemn imagery, yet saturated with bright, eye-popping color. Greatly influenced by the subject of defining identity, his fascination lies within the individual self, and those fleeting in-between or contemplative states that zap you out of mundane reality. Reeder’s process is open and free flowing, focused on allowing the work to take on its own sense of self-identity. His work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally, along with numerous printed publications such as New American Paintings, Le Petit Voyeur, and HiFructose Magazine. Reeder participated as an artist in residence at Detroit’s Red Bull House of Art in 2016 and currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California.
Statement from Matthew Eaton (Uncommon Editions) - 2017
"Michael Reeder the man, much like his creative manifestations, is complicated. This is a disciplined and brilliant student of the arts who hacks through the bullshit clearing a path for us to follow. While conveying unequivocal technical proficiencies and the creative instincts of a classically trained portrait painter, he rattles our cages with his deep emotional insight and dark sense of humor. Reeder's work is carefully constructed using mostly traditional techniques easily identified by both a competent academic eye and average observer, yet somehow manages to confound us in his use of non traditional materials, methodologies and aesthetics. When I look at his work I imagine what once might have been a stoically posed figure within an old masters painting. Only, this poor sap had his skin carefully removed, his wardrobe replaced by graphic designers and thrust into the living world of Monty Python. Things all of a sudden are not what they seem. The rules are different, if they exist at all. So, in all this complexity and aesthetic layering, we find this powerful, calm and slightly amusing harmony, much like the man himself."