Artist and Composer Mark Kostabi was born in Los Angeles in 1960 to Estonian immigrants. He was raised in Whittier, California and studied drawing and painting at California State University, Fullerton. In 1982 he moved to New York and by 1984 he became a leading figure of the East Village art scene. During that time he also developed a provocative media persona by publishing self-interviews which commented on the commodification of contemporary art. By 1987 his works were widely exhibited in New York galleries and prominently throughout the United States, in Japan, Germany and Australia. In 1988, inspiring extensive international press coverage, he founded Kostabi World – his large New York studio known for openly employing numerous painting assistants and idea people. In 1996 be began dividing his time between New York and Rome and consequently his work’s already strong presence in the Italian art scene was vigorously enhanced.