Born in 1968 in Winnetka, IL, Alexander Gramm’s interest in art and culture began at an early age with visits to the Coleman Lake Club near Iron Mountain, WI. The Club, founded in 1880, maintains a collection of Indian artifacts from around the country and is considered by the Smithsonian Institute to be a significant and substantial collection. Throughout his childhood, Gramm had access to the collection and often yearned to be a part of that culture. As he grew into adulthood, he never lost his enthusiasm and desire to learn more about American Indian culture.
Realizing artistic expression was his calling; he applied and was accepted in to the Kansas City Art Institute, one of the first schools to implement the Foundation Program. This provided Gramm with an opportunity to explore photography, sculpture and painting in both oil and acrylic and was complemented by a strong foundation in art history.
After graduating from the Kansas City Art Institute and attending Rhode Island School of Design, Gramm refined his vision and immersed himself in mixed medium, combining his love of photography and painting. His Native American series, which was inspired by the photography of Edward Sheriff Curtis, allowed him to indulge his love of the American West and experiment with a contemporary application on an historic topic. Over the course of several years, Gramm was a spectator at more than a dozen Pow Wow’s and other Native American Indian gatherings paying tribute to their cultural heritage.
It was during these events that Gramm made his first request to photograph these regal subjects. Acceptance by the different tribes was a source of great pride and it is considered an honor to be allowed to photograph them under any circumstances. His photography from these events became the foundation for the Native American Series.
Gramm continues to work in mixed medium and is developing a new series that explores the contrast of old and new, the past and the present with painting and the printed word.
His work has been on view in a variety of pubic spaces such as the Denver Design Center and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. His work is also in private collections including Sigmar Polke, Montana, Baldwin Collection, Los Angeles, Skill Power Tools, Illinois and the Howe Collection, Pebble Beach, CA. Gramm’s work has been on exhibit in the Michael Kelly Gallery in Kansas City, the Mongerson Wunderlich Gallery in Chicago, the Michael McCormick Gallery in Taos, NM and the Glaggett Rey Gallery in Vail, CO.
Gramm currently resides in Los Angles, California.