DEBORAH OROPALLO was born in Hackensack, New Jersey in 1954 and received a BFA from Alfred University and an MA/MFA from the University of California at Berkeley. Originally trained as a painter, Oropallo incorporates mixed media techniques, including photomontage, video, computer editing, printmaking, and painting into her practice. Whether still or moving images, the resulting works bear traces of the distortions that evolve or remain from the image manipulation. Her composite works layer visual sources producing dense interplay between time, place, form, and content.
Oropallo’s exhibition history includes monographic exhibits at Catharine Clark Gallery, California, the Boise Art Museum, Idaho, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, California, Montalvo Art Center, California, San Jose Museum of Art, California; and work in exhibits at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, Rivalry Projects, New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California, The Jewish Museum, New York, and Whitney Museum of American Art (Whitney Biennial), New York. In 2024, the Schneider Museum of Art, Oregon, will be hosting a monographic survey exhibition of Oropallo’s work which will travel to the di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art accompanied by a catalogue. Oropallo’s work is housed in the collections of the Anderson Collection at Stanford University, California, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, California, Museum of Modern Art, New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California, and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Oropallo began making video work in 2008 and her solo video works Smoke Stacked (2017) and Going Ballistic (2017) are held in the collections of the Nevada Museum of Art and the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Archive respectively. Since 2017, Oropallo has collaborated on video works with Andy Rappaport. Their collaborative video work Smoke Stacked (2017) is in the collection of the Nevada Museum of Art exploring the intersection of art and the environment. The artists’ videos have been featured in exhibitions at the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara, California and at Rivalry Projects, New York, in 2023. In 2020, FLIGHT was acquired by 21c Museum Hotels, Kentucky for its permanent collection. In 2022, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC, acquired One World (2021), a 7 channel/7 screen video work.
Oropallo’s work is the subject of two monographs: POMP (2009) published by Gallery 16, and How To, published by the San Jose Museum of Art. She is a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Award, a Eureka Fellowship from the Fleishhacker Foundation, the Engelhard Award and a grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation.