* 1953, Germany
Odenbach was born in 1953 in Cologne, Germany, where he studied architecture, art history and semiotics between 1974–79. In the late 1970s, he started using video work, tapes, installations, performances and drawings to probe the cultural identity of his native Germany. His ambivalence to cultural history shows in works such as "Make a Fist in the Pocket", a German expression for hiding one´s rage.
Odenbach was a professor of media art at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design between 1992–98. He now lives and works in Cologne and is the professor for film and video art at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf since 2010.
Marcel Odenbach, with Ulrike Rosenbach and Klaus vom Bruch, is one of the most well-established and internationally known German video artists. In the 1970s, they formed the producer group ATV. Odenbach´s works paradigmatically criticize the specific conditions of the German society for which he usually finds literary titles referring to puns or traditional sayings.