Meet the Artist: Mingering Mike on His Creative Process and Artistic Inspirations

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  • In 2013, the Smithsonian American Art Museum acquired a collection of over 150 artworks made between 1969 and 1976 by a self–taught Washington, D.C. artist known only by his alter-ego, Mingering Mike. During his rare media appearances, the artist always wears a disguise in order to maintain his anonymity.

    The Mingering Mike collection comprises artworks constructed as part of the artist’s youthful fantasy of becoming a famous soul singer and songwriter, including LP albums made from painted cardboard, original album art, song lyrics and liner notes, and self-recorded 45 rpm singles.

    For more on Mingering Mike, check out Can Mike Really Sing?, an episode of SAAM’s web series Re:Frame

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