Born 1979 Frankfurt/ Main, Germany
Michael Just is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice is distinguished by his unique output: Just creates objects in support of an immaterial product. His process is similar to that of a cultural archaeologist. The artist sifts through important conceptually-rich historical artifacts that he manipulates to create a multi-layered viewer experience. Just hopes that this dual production of actual art objects along with what could be classified as curatorial practice ultimately manifests in ideas that open up possibilities for our future. CYDONIA believes Just is among the few artists working in this format today. Art makes the invisible visible; Just subverts this tradition by creating both what is visible and invisible. He is as dedicated to the immaterial as he is to his material objects.
Historically, Just has been motivated by sheer surface and veneers, believing that the substance of things, that which ultimately matters, takes no physical form; rather Just investigates the depth of what is superficial. His practice consistently relies heavily on dense and complex ideas but often, his objects take seemingly simple forms. In 2015, CYDONIA will present Just’s premier solo exhibition in a commercial gallery in the United States. In the upcoming What’s Done Cannot be Undone, he investigates the idea of forgiveness as theorist Rebecca Comay suggests. Just then brings together seemingly disparate historical elements in Texas and German history alongside Lady MacBeth, drawing connections that ask questions about redemption. Can contemporary culture understand a virtue commemorated in religion and spirituality within an alternative framework? What if forgiveness was a critical tool that could alter history?
Just is a graduate of the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, where he was awarded a Meisterschüler (Master Scholar) diploma as well as an EHF-Fellowship from the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation. In 2009, he received an MFA from Goldsmiths, University of London as a DAAD Postgraduate Fellow. His work has been shown internationally in galleries and museums.
The artist lives and works in Berlin.