David Shapiro was born in Brooklyn, New York and earned his B.F.A. at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, followed by his M.F.A. at Indiana University. Shapiro’s work is included in many public and private collections including The Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon Guggenheim Museum; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina. Exhibitions in Atlanta, London, Washington, DC, Toronto, Tokyo, New York, Los Angeles, and Miami amongst others, have featured his work.
Artworks often feature adjacent square or rectangular panels united by a color scheme or spectrum that is broken with changes in patterning. The titles of his works invoke meditative practices of Eastern traditions, such as “Clearing” the mind, the “Savasan” yogic posture, “Mudra” (a symbolically significant Buddhist or Hindu hand gesture), or the concept of the “Origin and Return”— the starting and ending of meditation and even life in one state of consciousness. His works from the seventies evoke a balancing of geometric shapes and expressive calligraphic backgrounds. In the 1980s, Shapiro began working in multi-panel compositions that reference Japanese screens. Over the course of his career, Shapiro created over fifty editions and worked with IFPDA members Tandem Press, Wildwood Press, and Goya-Girl Press.