Michael Somoroff CV

MICHAEL SOMOROFF
Lives and works in New York City
Michael Somoroff studied art and photography at the New School for Social Research in New York, opening his own studio in the mid-seventies, eventually moving for a time to Europe. In Europe, he became a celebrated photographer, contributing to such publications as Life, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Stern, Time, and Der Spiegel. His work is represented in important collections around the world, a sampling of which includes the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; and Museo Correr, Venice; it has been exhibited at venues such as the International Center of Photography, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.
In 2006 Somoroff created a large-scale outdoor installation, Illumination I, for the Rothko Chapel in Houston, as the first artist invited to do so since Barnett Newman. Somoroff’s homage to legendary photographer August Sander, Absence of Subject, was presented during the 2011 Venice Biennale, the only exhibit in the artistic history of the city to be placed on Piazza San Marco. Since 2011, Absence of Subject has traveled museums and galleries continuously throughout Europe and in South America. In 2012, A Moment. Master Photographers: Portraits by Michael Somoroff was awarded Best Photo Books of the Year prize chosen by American Photo.
Somoroff is an internationally renowned director and a senior partner at Somoroff/IF Inc. one of the top content production companies in the world. He has been contributing award winning work to the advertising industry for over 30 years. He is recognized throughout the international advertising community as one of the top commercial directors working today and regularly contributes his talents to creating commercials, photography and all forms of content for countless companies seeking to further their brand identity strategically through his conceptual vision.


EXHIBITIONS

SELECTED SOLO SHOWS

2016
Galerie Ruth Leuchter, Düsseldorf, Germany

2015
Absence of Subject, Villa Vauban – Luxembourg City Museum
Master Photographers, 
Sol Mednick Gallery at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia

2014 
Absence of Subject, Museuo Nacional des Artes Visuales, Montevideo, Uruguay
Absence of Subject, Festival de la Luz in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Master Photographers, Fondazione Francesco Fabbri, Treviso, Italy
Absence of Subject, Sirius Arts Centre, Cork, Ireland
Absence of Subject, Benaki Museum, Athens, Greece

2013
Absence of Subject, Fondation Stelline in Milan, Italy
Absence of Subject, Centro de Arte la Regenta, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain
Absence of Subject, Tenerife Espacio de las Artes, Tenerife, Spain
Absence of Subject, Sala Municipal de Exposiciones de las Francesas, Valladolid, Spain

2012
Absence of Subject, Villa Brandolini F4 Un’Idea di Fotografia, Solighetto-Treviso, Italy
Absence of Subject, Galleri Image, Aarhus, Denmark
Tefillah I, Galerie Thomas Schulte, Berlin, Germany


2011
Absence of Subject, Piazza San Marco, during the Venice Biennial, Italy

2008
Illumination, OMI International Art Center, Sculpture park, Ghent, NY
The Red Sea, Kunst-Station Sankt Peter, Köln, Germany
Genesis, Video Animation during Easter Mass, Kunst-Station Sankt Peter, Köln, Germany
The Absence of the Subject, Fotofest Houston, Offsite, Houston, Texas

2007
Illumination, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT
Illumination, BravinLee Offsite, Chelsea, New York City, NY
VITAMIN W, The Wonder Factor, Newark, NJ

2006
Illumination, Rothko Chapel, Houston, Texas

1985
Olympus Galerie, Hamburg, Germany

1978
Vegetable Series, International Center of Photography, New York, NY
 

SELECTED GROUP SHOWS

2014
Paris Photo, Feroz Gallery, Paris, France
MIA Art Fair, Milan, Italy
Paris Photo-Los Angeles, Feroz Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
AIPAD, Feroz Gallery, New York, USA


2013
Paris Photo-Paris, Feroz Gallery, Paris, France

2012
Art Basel, Galerie Thomas Schulte, Basel, Switzerland

2007
VITAMIN W, The Wonder Factor, Newark, NJ, USA.
Yun Bai, Monica Castillo, Rodbey Dickson, Anne Dushanko Dobek, Fred Fleisher, Shingo Francis, Asha Ganpat, Lynne Dian Gulezian, Ruth Hardinger, James Jack, Jeremy Kost, David Meanix, Pablo Orendain, Hermes Payrhuber, Michael Rees, Lereen Rowley, Michael Somoroff, Lyann Sullivan, Carlo Vialu

2005
ARCO, Steven Sacks, Bitsforms Gallery, Chelsea, New York City, USA.
Michael Joaquin Grey, Lynn Hirshman, Yael Kanarek, Michael Najjar, Michael Rees, Michael Somoroff

“Touch and Temperature” curated by Michael Rees, Steven Sacks, Bitsforms Gallery, Chelsea, New York City
With Matthew Barney, Lowell Boyers, Mary Ellen Carroll, Peter Dudek, John Gerrard, Alex Grey, Grahm Guerra, Mara Haseline, Yael Kanarek, Golan Levin, Fabian Marcaccio, Steve Miller,  Michael Najjar, Joseph, Nechvatal, Sabina Ott, Casey Reas, Katie Schimert, Makai Smith, Michael Somoroff, Ted T. Stanke, James Stewart, Mary Ann Strandell

“Touch and Temperature” curated by Michael Rees, Deborah Colton Gallery, Houston, Texas, in collaboration with Steven Sacks, Bitsforms Gallery, Chelsea, New York City
With Matthew Barney, Lowell Boyers, Mary Ellen Carroll, Peter Dudek, John Gerrard, Alex Grey, Michael Joaquin Grey, Grahm Guerra, Mara Haseltine, Yael Kanarek, Golan Levin, Fabian Marcaccio, Steve Miller, Michael Najjar, Joseph, Nechvatal, Sabina Ott, Casey Reas, Katie Schimert, Makai Smith, Michael Somoroff, Teg T. Stanke, James Stewart, Mary Ann Strandell

“Integrating the Digital Consciousness,” Art Houston, Houston, Texas, USA, Deborah Colton Gallery, in collaboration with Steven Sacks.
Michael Rees, Michael Somoroff, Yael Kanarek & Manfred Mohr

 

2003
“Consciousness and Process, The Digital in Sculpture, Photography, Animation.”
Michael Rees & Michael Somoroff
Silvermine Guild Art Center, New Canaan, CT, USA.

“Digital Consciousness, Michael Somoroff, Michael Rees” during Art Cologne
Dieter Zeibig, K99, Köln, Germany

“The Physics of Spirituality”, Westwood Gallery, Soho, New York City, USA.
With John Marc Edwards, Leonid Lamm, Michael Rees, Gary Gissler, Jeffrey Maron, Mary Ann Strandell, Helmut Grill, Komar & Melamid, Michael Somoroff, Doug Henders, David Noonan, Tibor Szenmenyey-Nagy, Ellen Kooi, Peter Rose, Tim White

1996
AICP (Association of Independant Commercials Producers)
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Detroit Institute of Art, Detroit, MI, USA.
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL, USA.
High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA, USA.
Honolulu Academy of Arts, Honolulu, HI, USA.
State Museum of Technique and Design, Warsaw, Poland.
Museum of Design and the ARCHA Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic.
State Gallery of Art, Sopot, Poland.
Mucsarnok Palace of Art, Budapest.

1994    
AICP (Association of Independant Commercials Producers)
Los Angeles, County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
Detroit Institute of Art, Detroit, MI, USA.
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL, USA.
High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Ga, USA.
Honolulu Academy of Arts, Honolulu, HI, USA.
State Museum of Technique and Design, Warsaw.
Museum of Design and the ARCHA Theatre, Praque.
State Gallery of Art, Sopot, Poland.
Mucsarnok Palace of Art, Budapest.

1986
Frankfurt Kunstverein, “Men Seeing Men”, Frankfurt, Germany

1985
Photokina, “Modern Color Photography,” curated by Manfred Heiting, Köln, Germany.
Olympus Galerie, Amsterdam, Netherlands

1984
Olympus Galerie, Hamburg, Germany

1980
Photokina, “Sixty Years of Photography”, Köln, Germany

1978
Rizzoli International, New York City.
Saratoga Art Gallery, Saratoga, New York, USA.
Terrain Gallery, 144 Green St., New York City, USA.
New School for Social Research, New York City, USA

 

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS

The Eyes magazine special publication, Michael Somoroff, Absence of Subject, Photo-Plastik, 2014
A Moment. Master Photographers, Portraits by Michael Somoroff, Damiani, 2012
Absence of Subject, Walter König, 2011
Michael Somoroff: Illumination I at the Rothko Chapel, Rothko Chapel Books, 2008
Image of the Not-Seen: Search for Understanding, The Rothko Chapel Art Series, 2005
Kinder in Europa, Nicolai, 1988
The Vegetables Series, International Center of Photography 1985


AWARDS

American Photo Best Photo Books of the Year prize, 2012, A Moment. Master Photographers: Portraits by Michael Somoroff 
Kodak book Prize, Best Photography Book of the Year, 1987, Kinder of Europe
Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP) Gold Metal, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
Gold Lions, Cannes, France
Gold Metals, Canadian Besse Award
Gold Metal, Mobius Award
Gold Metals, New York Art Director’s Club
Gold Metal, CA Award
Andy Award of Merit
Gold Metals, Clio Award
Society of Publication Designers Award

GRANTS

Eastman Kodak Co. – The Philharmonic Project
Nikon Corporation – The Philharmonic Project
Spring Mills Corporation Installation

 

HONORS

Executive Director, New Light Foundation, Jerusalem, Israel and New York City
Board Member, The Sculptor’s Guild of America
Honorary Committee, Sculpture Center, Queens, New York
Honorary Member of the judging committee, Director’s Guild of America Film Festival
Member of the Director’s Guild of America
N.Y. Art Director’s ClubBOOKSA Moment. Master Photographers, Portraits by Michael Somoroff, Damiani, 2012
Absence of Subject, Michael Somoroff – August Sander, Walter König, 2011
Michael Somoroff: Illumination I at the Rothko Chapel, Rothko Chapel Books, 2008
Image of the Not-Seen: Search for Understanding, The Rothko Chapel Art Series, 2005
Jewish Art in America by Matthew Baigell, 2006
You Should See Yourself, Jewish Identity in Post Modern American Culture by Vincent Brook, Rutgers University Press, 2006
Kinder in Europa, by Michael Somoroff, Nicolai, 1988
Abschied von der Realität, Rowohlt Verlag 1988
Männer sehen Männer, Photographie Verlag 1986
50 years, Modern Color Photography, PhotoKina Koln 1986
Somoroff, The Vegetables Series, International Center of Photography 1985

 

SELECTED COLLECTIONS
Public collections:
Museum of Modern Art, New York
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
ICP-International Center of Photography, New York City, USA
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Library, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.
Art OMI, Fields Sculpture Park, Columbia County, New York
Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, Germany
Museo Correr, Venice, Italy
Columbia University Library, New York City, USA

Corporate collections:
AMB Generali, Aachen, Germany.
Bogner GMBH, Wiernsheim, Germany
British American Tobacco, London, England
Condé Nast Archive, New York
Deutsche Bank, Frankfurt, Germany
Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, New York
Estée Lauder, New York Forbes, New York
Forbes, New York, NY
Gruner & Jahr, Hamburg, Germany
Hakuhodo, Tokyo, Japan
Hasselblad Corporation, Stockholm, Sweden
Hearst Publications, New York
Hugo Boss, Metzingen, Germany
ITT Corporation, White Plains, NY
Jahreszeiten-Verlag GMBH, Hamburg, Germany
Johnson & Johnson, New Brunswick, NJ
Joop, Hamburg, Germany
Konica, Tokyo, Japan Sony Corporation, Tokyo, Japan
Longaberger Company, Ohio
Meade Paper, El Paso, TX
Pfizer, New York, NY
Reemtsma, Hamburg, Germany.
Seagrams, Pernod Ricard, London, UK.
Sony Corporations, Tokyo, Japan
Spring Mills Corporation, New York, NY
Swissair, Zürich, Switzerland
Time-Warner, New York, NY
Unilever, New York
Wempe, Hamburg, Germany

Private collections:
Ghada Amer, New York
Jean-Charles Blais, Paris, France
Luc Bondy, Berlin, Germany
Cornelius Bossers, Hamburg, Germany
Klaus Maria Brandauer, Vienna, Austria
Brassai Estate, Paris, France
Cornell Capa, New York, NY
Bunny and Jeff Dell, East Hampton, NY
Doris Dörrie, Munich, Germany
Christoph Eschenbach, Paris, France
Andreas Feininger Estate, New York, NY
Jürgen Flimm, Hamburg, Germany
Steve Forbes, New York
Justus Frantz, Hamburg, Germany
Milton Glaser, New York
Benny Goodman Estate, New York, NY
Herbert Grönemeyer, Köln, Germany
Michael Gross, Munich, Germany
Bettina Hahn, Hamburg, Germany
Princess Alexandra Von Hanover, Hannover, Germany
Jochen Holy, Metzingen, Germany
Horst P. Horst Estate, New York, NY
Derek Jarman Estate, London, UK
Wolfgang Joop, Hamburg, Germany
Andre Kertesz Estate, New York, NY
Yuri Klemenko, Moscow, Russian Republic
Dr. Frank Klion, New York, NY
Komar & Malemide, New York, NY
Manfred Lahnstein, Hamburg, Germany
Leonid and Ina Lam, New York, NY
Henri Lartigue Estate, New York, NY
Suze Lothar, Hamburg, Germany
Art Mane Estate, New York, NY
Eva Mattes, Hamburg, Germany
Mary McFadden, New York, NY
McLaughlin-Gill Estate, New York, NY
Frances McGlaughlin-Gill, New York, NY
Duane Michaels, New York, NY
Henri Nannen, Emden, Germany
Lowell Nesbitt Estate, New York, NY
Helmut Newton, Monte Carlo, Monaco
Ernst Neizvestny, New York, NY
Alain-Dominique Perrin, Paris, France
Paolo Portoghesi, Milano, Italy
Leonard Raver Estate, New York, NY
Thomas Ruff, Düsseldorf, Germany
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Munich, Germany
Doris Runge, Bamberg, Germany
Michael and Debbie Salzer, New York, NY
Heikki Sarmanto, Helsinki, Finland
Heribert Sasse, Berlin, Germany
Manfred Schell, Köln, Germany
Peter Schmidt, Hamburg, Germany
Harriet Selling, Milano, Italy
Garcia Seville, Barcelona, Spain
Wolfram Siebeck, Munich, Germany
Jeanloup Sieff, Paris, France
Leonid Sokov, New York, NY
Maja Stalleroyler, Frankfurt, Germany
Bert Stern, New York, NY
Ralph Towner, New York
Tomi Ungerer, South Ireland
H.C. Wagner, Hamburg, Germany
Peter Zadek, Hamburg, Germany
Dieter Zeibig, Köln, Germany