Born in 1954 in Poland, Rogala studied music in Krakow before getting an MFA in painting at Krakow’s Academy of Fine Arts. He came to the United States in 1979, where he earned an MFA from the Chicago Art Institute. He later received a Ph.D. from the University of Wales, with a dissertation on interactive public art.
Chicago-based Rogala is most famous for his interactive installations and video theater pieces. The Chicago Tribune praised his work as “an exhilarating interweaving of video, performance, and numerous other media.” At Chicago’s Goodman Theater, Rogala presented Nature Is Leaving Us (1989), a music theater piece that featured a video wall of 48 television monitors. Electronic Garden/NatuRealization, an outdoor interactive installation project was installed in 1996 in Chicago’s Washington Square Park, and Divided We Stand, described as an “interactive media symphony” followed in 1997 at the Chicago Museum for Contemporary Art. Miroslaw Rogala’s artwork has been exhibited in more than 40 countries and is included in permanent collections all over the world.
Rogala’s most recent work has involved an ongoing engagement with landscape and still life images transformed through the use of Ford Oxaal’s computer software MEV/Minds-Eye-View. Transformed Garden puts into book format images and artworks that will be incorporated into an interactive website www.transformedgarden.com.
He is currently preparing, in association with the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taichung, Taiwan, a proposal and libretto for a multimedia interactive opera, DEL+ALT+CTRL.
A frequent collaborator with other artists, Rogala has worked with Merce Cunningham, filmmaker and installation artist Carolee Schneemann, Ed Paschke, and theater directors Michael Maggio (“Sunday in the Park with George”) and Byrne Piven. Rogala’s collaboration with Piven, a video version of the witches’ scenes used in a 1989 production of Macbeth: The Witches Scenes, has been shown in schools worldwide.
Rogala has been chair of the Department of CGIM/Computer Graphics and Interactive Media at Pratt Institute; director and the one of founding fathers of the PIMA/Performance and Integrated Media Arts at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, and has taught at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College. He was one of the founding fathers of the first MFA Electronic Arts Degree at iEAR Studio, Integrated Electronic Arts at Renssellaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York. He is currently directs the Graduate Program and Digital Arts Center for KSI/Knowledge Systems Institute in Skokie and Chicago