MALIK ROBERTS (b. 1990, Brooklyn, NY) is a Brooklyn based painter and multimedia artist creating works of figurative abstraction, which address contemporary social issues like police brutality, exclusionary politics, and systemic racism. Prismatic fragmentations of form, his deconstructed portraits convey complexities and tensions too-often masked by his subjects’ appearance. His work has been covered by publications including: The Washington Post, Hyperallergic, PAPER, Whitewall Magazine, and Milk. Roberts has collaborated with brands like American Express, Nike, Adidas, and Bombay Sapphire.
Roberts manipulates recognizable images and conventions from art history and the media to dismantle the viewer’s perception of reality. The artist begins by breaking down a familiar-feeling icon or landscape into its most basic geometric forms. He then reconstructs the picture, layering charged source imagery onto the geometric x-ray of his subjects. In this unique artistic language, Robert’s articulates haunting similarities between reality and caricature as fluently as he expresses their spiritual dissonance.
Presenting scenes all too familiar, the artist invites new ways of seeing. Unlike the reductive rabble-rousing typical of Digital Age media, Roberts portrays his subject’s internal and external conflicts with kaleidoscopic effect. His sophisticated handling of form and content adjusts for our humanity, recasting once-linear narratives as revelatory meditations on the creaking mechanics of justice.