Iran do Espírito Santo was born in Mococa, Brazil in 1963. In 1986 he received a B.A. at the Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado in São Paolo.
One of Brazil's most intriguing contemporary artists, Espírito Santo is best known for his sensuously minimalist work that deals with issues of place, structure, material, design and surface with a rigorous conceptual sensibility. His work undertakes a subtle subversion of Minimalism through abstracted everyday items. Espírito Santo is concerned with the tactile attributes of his chosen materials and with the sensuous contours of simple abstract forms in space. Working in stainless steel, glass, copper, stone or paint on plaster, he employs subtle illusionistic devices, instigating a play of depth that remains consistent from piece to piece.
In 2002, Sean Kelly gallery presented the first North American gallery exhibition of his work, which comprised wall installations and sculptural works. Since then, he has continued to reflect on daily objects and the transformation of industrial design items into iconic minimalist sculptures. These works are often presented in conjunction with the precise and technically rigorous site-specific installations painted on to the gallery walls.
Espírito Santo has received international acclaim in the past two decades. His works have been exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide; and are included in the collections of many prominent international museums, such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. His works have been included in the Venice Biennale, the Bienal de São Paulo, and the Istanbul Biennal. Recent exhibitions have included The Portrait as an Image of the World at the Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo, Brazil and Present Tense at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Iran do Espírito Santo's first public work in the United States, Playground, was installed by The Public Art Fund in September of 2013 and was on view through February 2014 in Central Park in New York City.
Iran do Espírito Santo lives and works in São Paolo, Brazil.