Bernard Solco is an American multimedia artist based in New York City who is best known for his large-scale paintings of product barcodes. From a very young age, he showed an intense interest in the arts and explored a variety of mediums from painting and photography to mask-making and sculpture. At the age of eleven, he sold his first work on canvas. By the age of fourteen, he had developed a unique style that had won him several art awards in shows and competitions.
Solco worked part-time while in school as a paid apprentice for a New York City graphic designer. After high school, the young artist felt more inclined to remain working in the graphic arts field rather than going on to an art school or university.
For the next several years the self-taught artist worked as a freelance graphic designer while also creating original paintings which he sold in the private sector. Solco began working with a fellow designer from New York City who later introduced him to an art dealer in NYC. The gallery owner took an immediate interest in Solco’s works on canvas and offered him a show in his Soho gallery. In 1996 Bernard Solco launched a full-time career in the fine arts and put together an impressive body of work that proved to be well accepted.
Since then Solco’s artwork has been recognized and exhibited worldwide. His artwork has been the subject of many articles in international publications including the London Daily Mail, the New York Times, and Smithsonian Magazine. Many prominent collectors in the arts and industry have acquired his paintings and sculptures. Solco has also been commissioned to paint portraits and create original works of art for some of the world’s most recognized personalities including Donald Trump, Brooke Shields, Siegfried & Roy, George Steinbrenner, and Rudy Giuliani to name a few.
Bernard Solco is the first artist to focus on barcodes as a fine art subject. He began working with barcodes in 1990 and launched his first solo exhibition entitled “American Product Series”, in Soho New York City in 1996. The exhibit comprised of 20 large-scale barcode paintings featuring the top-selling consumer products. Solco has been commissioned to paint barcodes for art collectors worldwide. His giant product barcodes have been acquired by major corporations such as Kellogg’s Corporation, Eastman Kodak, Nabisco, and M&M Mars.
In 1997 Bernard Solco was one of the first civilians to be introduced to the future barcodes and began painting QR Codes and other 2D Symbologies when the technology was still in the government sector and the Department of Defense. In January of 1998, Bernard Solco launched a new series of giant matrix barcode paintings entitled “SYMBOLOGY”. Bernard Solco has painted more than thirty various matrix barcodes for private and corporate collectors.
Bernard Solco’s barcode art was also recognized by the information technology industry and in 1999 was named as one of the most significant things to take place in information technology by Auto Identification Magazine. He has been commissioned by big-tech corporations such as Symbol Technologies, Robotic Visions, and Zebra Technologies to exhibit his barcode paintings in the United States, London, Brussels, and Paris.
Bernard Solco is currently creating new works on canvas and paper. Solco’s newest series of paintings communicates to the viewer with an app that can be downloaded to any smartphone. They are the world’s first talking paintings.