All of my paintings are acrylic on beveled wood and use scientific and mathematical systems as compositional frameworks. Rooted in a micro versus macro relationship, imagery from sacred, biological and cultural systems is manipulated and reconfigured to create new meaning from disparate elements. Color creates harmony and contrast; hard-edged forms compete with blurry, amorphous masses; while stylized cells may coexist with technological motifs or cultural patterns. The omission of my hand and the painting wrapping around all edges of the surface leaves my process a mystery while challenging traditional painting norms. Questions about the work’s creation heightens curiosity while fostering a more contemplative dialogue concerning the work’s meaning. This experience is a great analogy for my creative process, which I view as a vehicle to explore aspects of spiritualism in relationship to the human search for meaning and fulfillment in the twenty-first century.
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Darren McManus is a visual artist and assistant professor living in Lambertville, New Jersey. He received his M.F.A. in painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art and his B.F.A from the Hartford Art School, where he completed a double major and spent his junior year studying at the Glasgow School of Art in Scotland. McManus has been awarded numerous grants and awards including: a perfect score from the jurors and the highest Individual Artist Fellowship Grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts; an Individual Artist Grant from the Puffin Foundation; a Full-Time Faculty Research Grant from Raritan Valley Community College; selection for Creative Capital’s Professional Development Program; and a Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation Creative Fellowship in conjunction with The Millay Colony for the Arts. Additionally, McManus has been selected for numerous residency fellowships including: Haystack Mountain Open Studio Residency, on Deer Isle, ME; NES Artist Residency in Skagaströnd, Iceland; The Solo(s) Project House in Newark, NJ; Salzburg Kunstlerhaus in Salzburg, Austria; Chashama North in Pine Plains, NY; The Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT; The Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in Amherst, VA; The Millay Colony for the Arts in Austerlitz, NY; The Artists’ Enclave at I-Park in East Haddam, CT; and The Cooper Union School of Art – Drawing & Painting Residency Program in New York, NY. His paintings have been widely exhibited in galleries and museums across the United States and have twice been selected by the Boston based Open Studios Press for inclusions in their juried publication New American Paintings.
M.F.A. Cranbrook Academy of Art
B.F.A. Hartford Art School & Glasgow School of Art, Scotland
Notable Exhibitions: solo shows marked with asterisk *
*Transitions, curated by Kulvinder Kaur Dhew, Sussex County College, Newton, NJ
*Tangents, Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton, NJ
*Silent Language, Raritan Valley College Art Gallery, Northbranch, NJ
Space Invaders, curated by Samuel Rowlett, Fountain Street Gallery, Boston, MA
The Independent School Day Show, Space Heater Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
Origins, Parlor Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ
POWER, curated by 6YL Publications, Allpress Studios, Collingwood, Australia
+1, curated by Wes Sherman, The Center for Contemporary Art, Bedminster, NJ
Geometry of Chance, Mirus Gallery, San Francisco, CA
Awards & Residencies: see bio