Michael Gambino


Michael Gambino born in New York in 1988. After studying Science and Biology, Gambino graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts of Brera in the visual arts. 
In 2012 he was selected by the art critic Ivan Quaroni as an artist to be presented at the Affordable Art Fair 2012 in Milan at the space Eventiquattro (the new building of il Sole 24 Ore, designed by Renzo Piano) and in the same year, he prepared his first personal exhibition Metamorfosi at Castello Scaligero of Malcesine (Verona). The next year, he opened the solo exhibition Beautiful flying at Galleria Colossi Arte Contemporanea.

In 2011 he participated in diverse group exhibitions at the Cairati Art Gallery of Morcote in Switzerland, the Galleria “Il Ponte” and the Pinacoteca Civica di Pieve of Centro for the occasion of the exhibition Esercizi di ammirazione nella notte. Arte, Moda, Musica e Design nella Notte Europea dei Musei. In 2012 he won the Concorso di Arti Visive prize organized by the Assogestioni Association for the occasion of the Salone del Risparmio event at the prestigious Grafton building, the new congress centre of the Università Bocconi of Milan, and he participated in the international meeting of land artists Humus Park at the Parco del museo Archeologico and at Villa Romana di Torre (Pordenone). In 2013 he joined the group, The Italian Wave, with whom he showed in Turkey, Greece, Romania, and Lithuania. He also participated in numerous international contemporary art exhibitions such as Art Athens and Art Vilnius, both occurring in 2014.

In 2013 he participated in the exhibition created by the Flangini Association, in collaboration with the Italian Embassy in Washington D.C. and the Italian Institute of Culture in Washington D.C., titled Siamo quel che mangiamo – Sostenibilità e arte/ Are we what we eat? – Sustainability and Art. For the occasion his works are displayed in various prestigious buildings in Washington D.C. and Milan: il Grattacielo Pirelli, the former Church of San Carpoforo (Brera) in Milan and the Atrium of the Corcoran Gallery of Art and Corcoran Gallery 31 in Washington D.C.. In 2014 he was invited by the curators, Daniele Torcellini and Linda Kniffitz, to participate in the group exhibition Eccentrico Musivo. Young Artists and Mosaic at the MAR Museum of Art in the city of Ravenna. One of his works was entered as part of the prestigious permanent collection of the museum. For the occasion of the exhibition Mental Geography at the Ianchelevici Museum at La Louvière in Belgium some of his installations remain in a permanent manner. The next year he participated in the group exhibition I Have a Dream curated by Melissa Proietti and Raffaella A. Caruso, hosted in the rooms of Palazzo Reale in Milan, which marks the Milan stage of the exhibition Freedom Fighters. In I Kennedy e la battaglia per i diritti civili, he worked for the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the awarding of the Nobel Prize to Martin Luther King Jr.

In 2015 he worked for the exhibition at Fabbrica del Vapore of Milan, for the occasion of the exhibition curated by Chiara Canali. and was among the participants in the Contest Internazionale Milano Città Mondo. He was again invited by the art critic Simona Gavioli to participate in the exhibition Siam come le lucciole organized by Riserva di Fizzano of Rocca delle Macie a Castellina in Chianti (Siena). The show then transferred to Grome Losa Palace and The Museum of the Territorio Biellese, on the request of the Foundation Cassa di Risparmio of Biella. Gambino selected to use luminescence in his work, this being the central theme of the exhibition, dedicated to raise awareness on the issue of energy during the International Year of Light (2015). In the same year, he was invited to exhibit at the Museum of the Stadio di Domiziano of Roma for the occasion of the show Mafia Capitale, Roma ai tempi degli ingranaggi lubrificati, and Arte Contemporanea Reattiva, curated by Antonietta Campilongo.

He was also invited to create the logo representing Rome for the city’s bid in the 2024 Olympic Games.
 With his works he has participated in many fairs nationally and internationally: ArtVerona, Artefiera Bologna, ArtLondon, ST-ART, Fiore Europèenne d’Art Contemporain of Strasbourg, and Art Karlsruhe.

In 2016 he was selected to participate in Shakespeare in Rome organized by Galleria Russo of Rome with the patronage of the British Council for the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. Furthermore, he is planning a show at the House of Mantegna in Mantua and, in autumn, at MAM of Gazoldo of Ippoliti (Mantua). The works of Michael Gambino are populated with rarefied three dimensional clusters of paper butterflies, patiently cut by hand and fastened to the canvas with pins, defining the geographical boundaries transient and elusive of his unpublished and personal cartography of the world made of evanescent ethereal miniature compositions, and juxtaposed with a strong chromatic sensitivity. This ephemeral and volatile composition fades to the infinity of the void in evanescent trails, sometimes in whirls and spirals around vintage books, placed on a neutral background that illuminates the luminescent glow in the dark, in tribute to the natural phenomenon of bioluminescence. In his works the flow of these creatures follow to regenerate, animated by the same vital energy that moves the biological fluid cycles in nature, the metamorphosis of the organic material the artist knows well due to an initial training addressed to biology and chemistry. The butterfly, an ancient symbol of metamorphosis and rebirth, becomes a metaphor of universal harmony which binds all aspects of life that are constantly changing. This inspiration possibly comes from the Chaos Theory from the mathematic statistician Edward Lorenz, according to which there is a logical system of connections and cyclic recurrences that regulates the trend of significant events in temporal and spatial distance between them, which represents the principle generator (“Can the flap of a butterfly’s wing in Brazil cause a tornado in Texas?”). In the poetics of Gambino, this wonderful creature of colourful wings becomes the anchor for representing the totality of the dynamics that govern the evolution of the social, natural, political, and economic realms on our planet.

He lives and works between Varese and Brescia.