Born in New York, Paul Brach originally began painting in an Abstract Expressionist style, having met many of the artists in the movement at NYC’s notorious Cedar Tavern, before moving towards Minimalism in the late 1950s.
He began showing at the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York in 1957 when it opened and went on to hold several solo exhibitions there, as well as group shows where he exhibited alongside some of the most prestigious artists of his generation.
Brach began teaching in the early 1960s, taking on part-time roles at The New School, Cooper Union, Parsons School of Design and Cornell University’s NYC programme. In 1967, he moved to California to take up teaching full-time, joining the University of California at San Diego as Chair of the new art department.
Two years later, Brach took up a role as Dean of the newly opened California Institute of the Arts (SoCal) where he built up a faculty of artists that included Allan Kaprow, Nam June Paik, and Miriam Schapiro (Brach’s wife), who, together with Judy Chicago, launched the Feminist Art Program.