United States of America, 1951
Donald Mitchell was born in 1951 in San Francisco, California. Within the first five years of his life, Donald isolated himself through his reluctance to speak. He uttered his first words and phrases only after starting primary school for children with disabilities. At the age of thirteen Donald Mitchell got into a traumatic accident and, as a result, started developing behavioral problems. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and committed to a psychiatric hospital. In 1975 he started frequenting the Creative Growth Art Center, where he started to draw: at first his trace was abstract and restrained. In the 1980s Donald Mitchell made a breakthrough and depicted his first human figure. Solitary at first, it soon multiplied until transforming into an invasive and troubling crowd of uniformed faces. Males and females undistinguishable, Mitchell’s creatures exude elfish energy. The low angle perspective of his drawings accentuates their oppressive presence. He has been officially recognized as Art Brut creator and was showcased at the Rena Bransten Gallery, San Francisco, Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York, Collection de L’Art Brut, Lausanne and ABCD art brut, Paris.