Michael Barrett, Biography

"A brilliant manifestation for the former college football player and U.S. Marine who spent his entire life amid alpha males until cancer challenged his proverbial superman complex and forced him to reexamine life."
-Las Vegas Weekly

Michael Barrett currently teaches Performance Art History at UNLV and enjoys his position as Ph.D. Candidate (ABD) at the University of Arizona. Additional degrees include an M.F.A. in Contemporary Sculpture and a B.S. in Health and Physical Education. He has taught and performed extensively in and outside of the United States, including Austria, Czechia, England, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, and Switzerland.

Barrett's work physically addresses Western masculine narratives and interrogates key constructs of gender. Having served a tour in the U.S. Marine Corps, earned a collegiate athletic scholarship, and survived a battle with testicular cancer, Barrett employs a phenomenological lens for analyzing hypermasculinity and its historical constructs. His work reconsiders social structures and how they empower and disempower by grounding itself in influential theories such as Donna Haraway (cyborg theory), Yi Fu Tuan (space and place) and Martin Heidegger (being and time).

Barrett provides a behind-the-scenes look through five lenses of hypermasculinity. The areas under investigation address cycles and social constructs, while acknowledging previously missed, invisible, and silenced perspectives around what it means to be human.
1. Physical force and control
2. Work and occupational achievement
3. Patriarchy
4. Outdoorsman
5. Heterosexual

Selected solo and group exhibitions include:
The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, New York City; San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery; PSi #19 - Stanford University; Berkeley Art Center; Tucson Museum of Art; Quartair Initiatives for the Arts, Den Haag, Netherlands; Scope International, Basel, Switzerland; Galeria Michaela Stock, DOPUST 2016 – Vienna, Austria; Surface Gallery, U.K.; SOMArts, San Francisco; Las Vegas Contemporary Arts Center; Krowswork, Oakland; Raczej Galeria, Poznan, Poland; Hole of Fame Gallery, Dresden, Germany; Galerie Koppelmann Kunstwerk Nippes, KulturBunker, Cologne, Germany; Kulturzentrum Faust, Hanover, Germany; Studio: Ilka Theurich, Hanover, Germany; Kunstpavillon Burgbrohl, Germany; Kaskadenkondensator, Basel, Switzerland; and many more...