Biography

Michael Largent (°1953, Houston, Texas) is an adventurous artist and makes conceptual artworks through photography-based imagery. He is also an educator, photographer, and visual communicator who well-acquainted with the art and science of marketing and design.  

Proud to be a Son of the Republic of Texas, Michael lived in Germany for two years while his father was stationed there (Sgt. Largent, of course) and then left his home state for the mountains of Tennessee in 1972. 

While earning his BA in Photography from TN Temple University in Chattanooga, TN, he studied under Tom Kilpatrick. There he was exposed to alternative photography processes such as pinhole and photograms, and non-silver printing processes such as cyanotype and gum bichromate, and to the photographers who shaped his earliest artistic vision: Steiglitz, Steichen, Day, et al. 

Michael quickly developed his photography skills working for photography and film production studios, a couple of daily newspapers, and the local TV station. He has also freelanced magazine and agency assignments from Maine to Washington and on location around the globe. Unfortunately Michael set his camera down to focus on his 35 year career in graphic and visual communication in the Atlanta and Chattanooga markets.  

However, in 2006 Michael picked up his cameras again and rediscovered the joy of image making. He also began a teaching career becoming an Adjunct Instructor at Chattanooga State Community College teaching graphic design courses. Beginning in 2013 he began teaching graphics and photography courses at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, GA. He has also been a guest lecturer of photography at Lee University in Cleveland, TN. 

Michael is employed an Assistant Professor of Graphic Arts Technology at Chattanooga State Community College.In 2017, he graduated with a MFA in Visual Arts from Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, CA and plans to continue teaching and making art. 

Michael currently lives and works in Georgia, north of Atlanta. He has been married to Debbie since 1975. As of this writing, they have two sons, one daughter in-law (with another one on the way) and one incredibly cute grand-dude.




ABOUT THE ARTIST


Some artists paint with oils. I paint with pixels.

By applying abstraction, Largent creates with often unnoticed yet recognizable elements, creating an unprecedented situation in which the viewer is confronted with the conditioning of their own perception and has to reconsider their own biased position.Largent creates art from digital photography, graphics, found imagery, and appropriated images. 

Like Gerhard Richter and the very nature of photography itself, he refuses to be tied down to a single technique or approach. From straight photography to abstraction to hybrid forms incorporating other media, he often strays from the monotony of a single style or direction, preferring to discover the next way that photography can be explored.His work urges us to renegotiate photography as being part of a reactive or malleable medium. Largent is most influenced by the work of contemporary photographic artists who are challenging the traditional conventions of photography. 

By focusing on techniques and materials, he creates by means of rules and intuition, acceptance and refusal, luring the viewer to reconsider their preconceived notions of the medium.His photo-imagery may or may not reference recognizable form. The results might be deconstructed or intervened upon to the extent that meaning is shifted and possible interpretation becomes multifaceted. 

Michael is challenging the notion that the photograph needs to be representational or mimetic or simply two-dimensional. His current area of experimentation is with digital image manipulation and photo sculptural techniques. 

Starting with an original photograph or appropriated image, he may manipulate the image until it is unrecognizable as a photograph and takes on a new life of its own, creating forms, patterns and shapes as he will. His works are notable for their formal qualities in addition to the concepts on which they are based. This is of great importance and bears witness to his previous careers in photography and advertising/graphic design firms. 

Michael feels that he has failed as an "artist" if someone can look at one of his images and say, “I could have done that.”


CURRICULUM VITAE


EDUCATION 

2017 

 MFA-Visual Arts degree | Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA 

2014

Website Design : Audit | Chattanooga State Community College, Chattanooga, TN 

1989

Magazine Design : Audit | Portfolio Center, Atlanta, GA 

1981 

BA-Photography degree | Tennessee Temple University, Chattanooga, TN 


TEACHING EXPERIENCE 

2017–Present

Southern Adventist University, Collegedale, TN  

|  Adjunct Instructor, Graphic Design

2015–Present

Chattanooga State Community College, Chattanooga, TN 

|  Assistant Professor, Graphic Arts Technology 

2013 - 2016

Covenant College, Lookout Mountain, GA 

|  Adjunct Instructor, Photography and Graphic Design 

2006–2011

Chattanooga State Community College, Chattanooga, TN 

|  Adjunct Instructor, Graphic Arts Technology


SELECTED EXHIBITIONS

2017

“Reconsidering Residuum” | Solo MFA Thesis Exhibition | Heritage Gallery, Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA  •   “For Your Consideration” | MFA Graduates Group Showcase | Exhale Unlimited, Los Angeles, CA   •   “Interplay” | Jurored Group Exhibition | Shapeshifter Gallery, Chattanooga, TN  •   “HyperObjects” | Group Exhibition | Exhale Unlimited, Los Angeles, CA 

 2016

“A Show of Heads” | Juried Group Exhibition | Limmer Gallery, Hudson, NY  •   “Snap to Grid” | Juried Group Exhibition | LA Center For Digital Art, Los Angeles, CA  •   “Quartet Interpretations” | Juried Group Exhibition | Exit Gallery, Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA  •   “Resolution”| Group Exhibition | Exhale Unlimited, Los Angeles, CA 

 2015

“Recolor, Recover” | Group Exhibition | Exhale Unlimited, Los Angeles, CA  •   Juried Group Exhibition | Association for the Visual Arts, Chattanooga, TN  •   Juried Group Exhibition | INCubator/BDC, Chattanooga, TN 

 2014

Jurored Group Exhibition | Exhale Unlimited, Los Angeles, CA  •   Juried Group Exhibition | Association for the Visual Arts, Chattanooga, TN  •   “Home” | Juried Group Exhibition | Art/Not Terminal Gallery, Seattle, WA 

 2013

Juried Group Exhibition | Reflections Gallery, Chattanooga, TN  •   Juried Group Exhibition | District Gallery, Knoxville, TN 

 2012

“Shapes of Futures Past” | Solo Exhibition | Creative Arts Guild, Dalton, GA  •   “Bokeh & Zen” | Solo Exhibition | Chattanooga Theatre Centre, Chattanooga, TN  •   Juried Group Exhibition | Reflections Gallery, Chattanooga, TN 

 2011

“Retrospective” | Solo Exhibition | Tennessee Temple University, Chattanooga, TN  •   “Bokeh & Zen” | Featured Artist | In-Town Gallery, Chattanooga, TN 

 2010 

Juried Group Exhibition | Association for the Visual Arts, Chattanooga, TN


PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATION AFFILIATIONS 

American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) 

Christians in the Visual Arts (CIVA) 

College Art Association (CAA) 

Society for Photographic Education (SPE) 


PRIVATE COLLECTIONS 

Works held in private collections in the United States and internationally 


Using Format