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Daniel Arsham

“Art needs to be a little dangerous.”

American,  b. 1980

Biography of Daniel Arsham 

Daniel Arsham (born 1980) is a contemporary artist known for his innovative sculptures and installations that blur the lines between art, architecture, and archaeology. Born in Cleveland, Ohio and raised in Miami, Florida, Arsham's artistic path began early. He attended the Design and Architecture Senior High School and later received a full scholarship to The Cooper Union in New York City, where he studied architecture and set design.

Arsham's work centers on the concept of "fictional archaeology." He imagines himself as an archaeologist from the future, unearthing relics of our present. His sculptures depict everyday objects – cameras, cars, Pokemon characters – eroded and encrusted, as if they've been buried for millennia. He uses unconventional materials like volcanic ash, selenite, and quartz to create a sense of age and decay.

Beyond sculptures, Arsham ventures into architectural interventions. He alters existing spaces, manipulating walls and surfaces to appear warped and aged. This further emphasizes the impermanence of our world and the passage of time.

Arsham's collaborative spirit extends beyond the gallery. He co-founded the design practice Snarkitecture and "Film the Future," creating short films set in his imagined future. He's also designed sets for the Merce Cunningham Dance Company and collaborated with fashion brands like Dior. His work is exhibited worldwide and resides in prestigious collections like the Centre Pompidou in Paris.

Daniel Arsham & The Contemporary Art Market 

Daniel Arsham's "Future Relics" series reigns supreme in his auction history. These sculptures, often featuring everyday objects like cameras, cars, or even Pokemon characters, are reimagined as archaeological finds from a distant future. Arsham's signature technique involves meticulously depicting these objects eroded and encrusted with materials like volcanic ash, selenite crystals, or even meteorite fragments. This juxtaposition of the familiar and the fantastical creates a captivating tension, blurring the lines between reality and a fictional future.

The most expensive Arsham work at auction is "A Pair of Pink Quartz and Blue Calcite Eroded Rolling Stone Magazines" (2020), which achieved a staggering $475,000 in 2020. This record highlights the collector interest in Arsham's ability to imbue everyday objects with a sense of historical significance and lost beauty.

Other high-selling works include "Eroded Poke Ball (Cast)" (various editions), where the iconic Pokemon capture device appears weathered and crystallized, and "Eroded Bronze Pikachu (Small)" (various editions), showcasing a beloved character seemingly unearthed from a forgotten era. These works, along with "eroded" takes on classic Nike sneakers and eroded film canisters, consistently fetch significant prices, solidifying Arsham's position as a leading voice in contemporary art.

Daniel Arsham Artwork For Sale 

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