Brent Birnbaum








Born 1977 in Dallas, TX. Lives in Queens, NY and Schenectady, NY. Works in Amsterdam, NY.

Brent Birnbaum’s work begins with collecting obsolescent objects and repurposing these collections with whimsy and aesthetic rigor. Many of Birnbaum’s projects have featured domestic objects, and are thus informed by Birnbaum’s interests in design, consumer culture, and notions of private and public space. Birnbaum’s work engages with the legacy of Duchamp in his use of the readymade object, humor, and voyeurism, as well as Minimalism in his use of everyday materials, shifts in scale, and formal concerns.

Brent Birnbaum received his MFA from the School of Visual Arts and a BFA from the University of North Texas in Denton. Birnbaum’s most recent solo exhibitions include Seven Games at Denny Dimin Gallery in New York, and That’s what he said at the Museum Wilhelm Morgner in Soest, Germany. He was the cofounder of Topless, a seasonal exhibition space in Rockaway Beach, NY, and has an extensive exhibition history, showing at the Abrons Art Center, NY; Casino Luxembourg, Luxembourg; Marta Herford, Germany; The New Bedford Art Museum, MA; Marianne Boesky Gallery, NY; and Regina Rex, NY. His work has been featured in The New York Times, Hyperallergic, New York Magazine’s Vulture, Artforum, among other publications. Elizabeth Denny and Craig Poor Monteith collaborated with Birnbaum during the Spring Break Art Fair in 2015 where Birnbaum constructed an installation of eleven running treadmills with painted belts.

Download CV


Voyeur Voyager Forager Forester
View  |  Purchase  | 
Museum Wilhelm Morgner
03.17.2018 - 05.27.2018
March 20, 2018 Outside Exhibitions

Brent Birnbaum at Museum Wilhelm Morgner in Germany

Brent Birnbaum – That’s what (s)he said. March 17 – May 27, 2018 Schroth in the Museum Wilhelm Morgner Thomästraße 1, 59494 Soest, Germany Visit museum website.

September 28, 2016 Press

Brent Birnbaum in ARTnews

HABITAT: Obsessions—Artists, Curators, and Dealors Share Their Unusual Collections BY Maximilíano Durón and Katherine McMahon Read on ARTnews While this issue of ARTnews focuses on today’s prominent art collectors, the urge to amass objects—both valuable and not—is nearly as old as mankind. The ancient Greeks and Romans collected, as Erin Thompson writes in her recently published book Possession: The Curious History of Private Collectors from Antiquity to the Present, as did Dutch aristocrats of Holland’s Golden Age, American tycoons of…Read More

August 24, 2016 Press

Review of Brent Birnbaum exhibition by Jongho Lee for Eyes Towards the Dove

“Voyeur Voyager Forager Forester at Denny Gallery” by Jongho Lee on August 24, 2016 Read on Eyes Towards the Dove In Brent Birnbaum’s first solo exhibit with Denny Gallery “Voyeur Voyager Forager Forester,” he carves out a new world for audiences to explore through the use of 45 pre-owned mini-fridges (specifically ones with faux wood-panel doors). Birnbaum stacks these objects into 16 different totems, each at a height ranging between two to five of them. The grains on the doors, combined with…Read More

August 23, 2016 Press

Review of Brent Birnbaum exhibition by Claire Voon for Hyperallergic

“Retro Refrigerators as Totems to Our Food Storage Habits” by Claire Voon on August 22, 2016 Read on Hyperallergic I’d expected the exhibition of 45, wood-paneled mini-fridges at the Lower East Side’s Denny Gallery to offer a literally cool breather from this sweltering summer, but none of them were running. The gallery has opted to leave them off for the obvious environmental reasons, but it does, however, offer visitors an uncommon gesture: an invitation to touch the art — to open each fridge and…Read More

July 13, 2016 Press

Artsy features Brent Birnbaum

Why an Artist Filled a Lower East Side Gallery with Mini-Fridges By Casey Lesser Jul 13, 2016 Read on Artsy On the first day of summer, Brent Birnbaum’s small, cubicle-like studio at the Brooklyn Army Terminal is stuffed nearly to the ceiling with 45 used mini-fridges. They’re of the faux-woodgrain variety that you might find in a ’90s-era man cave, or packed with Bud Light in a college dorm room, but they’re destined for a Lower East Side gallery. Piled…Read More

July 12, 2016 Press

T The New York Times Style Magazine features Brent Birnbaum

“Tiny, Artistic Worlds – Inside Mini-Fridges” by Alexandria Symonds. July 11, 2016 Peek inside the fridges and read on T The New York Times Style Magazine “Getting a car opened up my art practice,” admits the artist Brent Birnbaum, who’s based in Brooklyn but traveled as far afield as Staten Island, Connecticut and New Jersey to acquire the materials that form the basis of his new show: 45 pre-owned mini-fridges. Birnbaum spent four and a half years driving around to…Read More

July 05, 2016 Press

Artnet includes Brent Birnbaum in “Top 10 Shows on the LES and Surrounding Neighborhoods This Summer”

Top 10 Shows on the LES and Surrounding Neighborhoods This Summer It’s all happening downtown. By Henri Neuendorf, July 4, 2016 Read on Arnet News Already the site of New York’s emerging and experimental art scene, Manhattan’s Lower East Side and its surrounding neighborhoods the fun and discovery is multiplied in the summer when the galleries present oddball and left-field works including live plants, obsolete refrigerators, and copper heating circuits. Here artnet News compiled some of the most interesting and unusual shows that you…Read More

Art-in-Buildings Speaks with Brent Birnbaum and Elizabeth Denny

Read on Art-in-Buildings. IN CONVERSATION: BRENT BIRNBAUM AND ELIZABETH DENNY Brent Birnbaum: I have always been a collector of different objects that have potential to become something new. I started collecting smaller objects with an interest in building an archive of materials for my work about a decade ago upon moving to New York, that interest has grown both in the size of the objects and the scale of the collection. AiB: How does context and audience affect your work?…Read More

March 20, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Artforum highlights Brent Birnbaum’s SPRING/BREAK installation

Read on Artforum.  By Linda Yablonsky, March 6, 2015 Spring Forward WE HAD SOHO. We had the East Village. We have Chelsea and Williamsburg, Bushwick and Red Hook. What will become New York’s next art neighborhood? “I guess all of these artists live in the Bronx?” the actor Alan Alda surmised on Monday, during the cocktail hour for the Bronx Museum of Art’s annual benefit gala. We were far south of that borough, on the outer planet of the Conrad…Read More

March 19, 2015 Events

Brent Birnbaum in “On the Street,” with Bill Cunningham in the Sunday Times

On the Street By Bill Cunningham The New York Times, Sunday, March 8, 2015

March 19, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Vernissage TV interviews Brent Birnbaum at SPRING/BREAK

Watch on Vernissage TV. Interview with Brent Birnbaum at Spring/Break Art Show 2015 By Enrico, March 13, 2015 For the fourth edition of the curator-driven art show Spring/Break in New York, Elizabeth Denny and Craig Poor Monteith have chosen to present the New York-based artist Brent Birnbaum. Birnbaum has created a mountain of eleven running treadmills. The belts were painted by the artist with color gradients, thus creating a kinetic work that combines sculpture with moving paintings. In this video,…Read More

March 19, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Interview with Brent Birnbaum in the Huffington Post

Watch on Huffington Post. March 13, 2015 Artist Brent Birnbaum’s Mountain of Painted Treadmills (VIDEO) For the fourth edition of the curator-driven art show Spring/Break in New York, Elizabeth Denny and Craig Poor Monteith have chosen to present the New York-based artist Brent Birnbaum. Birnbaum has created a mountain of eleven running treadmills. The belts were painted by the artist with color gradients, thus creating a kinetic work that combines sculpture with moving paintings. In this video, Brent Birnbaum talks…Read More

March 06, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Brent Birnbaum in SPRING/BREAK Featured on NY1

Watch on NY1. By Stephanie Simon, March 5, 2015

March 06, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Hyperallergic Spotlights Brent Birnbaum and Amanda Valdez in SPRING/BREAK

Read on Hyperallergic.  By Allison Meier, March 4, 2015 Jam-Packed Spring/Break Art Show Pulls into Moynihan Station Brent Birnbaum’s installation of painted treadmills, curated by Elizabeth Denny & Craig Poor Monteith at the 2015 Spring/Break Art Show (all photos by the author for Hyperallergic) In its fourth year, Spring/Break Art Show is temporarily transforming the disused offices of Moynihan Station into an art fair based on the theme of “transaction.” With more than 80 curators and over 100 artists, it’s more a series…Read More

March 06, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Brent Birnbaum’s SPRING/BREAK Installation on artnet News

Read on artnet News. By Cait Munro, March 4, 2015 Spring/Break Art Fair Is Bigger, Flashier, and Scrappier Than Ever Spring/Break Art Show, the curator-driven art fair begun by Ambre Kelly and Andrew Gori in 2009, is back and better than ever, despite a location change. With a whopping 95 curators (up from last year’s 39—see Spring/Break Probes Deep Into Our Techno-Creepy Culture), the fair, which opens today, March 4, and runs through Sunday, March 8, has secured Moynihan Station as its…Read More

March 06, 2015 Art Fairs, Press

Brent Birnbaum’s Untitled Installation in SPRING/BREAK Highlighted in Cool Hunting

Read on Cool Hunting. By David Graver, March 3, 2015 Coinciding with NYC’s Armory Arts Week, the fourth annual SPRING/BREAK Art Show offers an immersive world of large-scale artistic creation. Taking over floors at Manhattan’s historic James A Farley Post Office, the fair delivers room after room of eccentric art—all driven by specific curators assigned to each space. This year’s theme happens to be “Transaction” and an element of the word, and its interpretations, grace most of what attendees will…Read More


This site uses analytics, cookies and/or other 3rd party technologies that may have access to your data, which are used to provide a quality experience. If you do not agree, opt out and we will not load these items, however, necessary cookies to enable basic functions will still load. Visit our Privacy Policy to learn more.
Contact Us:
Email us at [email protected] for requests involving data we collect. View our Privacy Policy for more info.
Opt In / Out:
To change your opt in settings, please click here to opt out or in. Or, close this popup.
Skip to toolbar