John Baldessari, ‘Raised Eyebrows/Furrowed Foreheads: Airplane (Concorde),’ 2009. Via ArtNet.
Currently showing at the Greta Meert Gallery in Brussels are seven pieces from the latest series by American artist John Baldessari. The selection represents a continuation of previous series, in which Baldessari explored fragmented body parts, abstraction of facial expressions and the relationship between separate parts and the whole. His former series, which came under the titles of ‘Noses & Ears, Etc.’, ‘Arms & Legs (Specif. Elbows & Knees)’, Etc, and ‘Prima Facie, Etc.’, in addition to his work at large, has emphasized the symbiotic relationship between painting and photography. In effect, Baldessari, who has shown in more than 200 solo and 900 group exhibitions in the United States and Europe, has been credited for having helped to establish photography as a more established artistic medium.
Interview with John Baldessari. [Artnet]
John Baldessari. [Baldessari]
Baldessari and Ono Win Golden Lions. [LATimes]
John Baldessari. [ArtWorks]
Interview with John Baldessari. [Art and Culture]
John Baldessari, ‘Raised Eyebrows/Furrowed Foreheads: Bridge Collapsing , 2009’. Via ArtNet.
Along with Baldessari’s fascination with the body is his use of a kind of “hybrid, visual language;” one in which multiple interpretations are at play through the use of cuts, omissions and shifting meanings. “I’m really interested in what conceptual leaps people can make from one bit of information from another and how they can fill the space,” the artist has said. In his current series, which mixes humor and irony, abstract facial expressions suggest different emotions and mentalities, but the planes of the image are multiplied through editing, and physical consistency is given to the work through the use of masking paint. The effect is a kind of blurring of photography and painting; of reality and fiction. Former notions of artistic ‘discipline’ and ‘genre’ break apart and the viewer is forced to re-interpret the recognizable.
John Baldessari, ‘Raised Eyebrows / Furrowed Foreheads: Two Arms (Pointing in Opposite Directions), 2009.’ Via LikeYou.
John Baldessari, ‘Raised Eyebrows/Furrowed Foreheads: Knife (with Hands).’ Via ArtNet.
Born outside of San Diego, California during the Great Depression in 1931, Baldessari is the son of a Danish mother and Austrian father. The artist attended San Diego State University and did graduate work at Otis Art Institute, Chouinard Art Institute, and the University of California at Berkeley. He taught at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, CA from 1970 to 1988 and at the University of California at Los Angeles from 1996 to 2007. His work can be found in numerous public collections including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C., the Tate Collection, London, and the Pompidou Center in Paris, France.
John Baldessari’s ‘Raised Eyebrows/ Furrowed Foreheads: (Black and White eyebrows)’, was shown this past January at the Marian Goodman Gallery in New York. Via TimeOut.
The artist in his Studio in Venice, California, 2005. Photograph by Catherine Opie. Via John Baldessari Catalogue Raisonné.
Known for having worked with a wide array of media, Baldessari is believed to have revolutionized the language of art, while opening up new opportunities for conceptual expression.
A portrait of John Baldessari by Sidney B. Felsen, 2007. Via Baldessari.
“Raised Eyebrows/Furrowed Foreheads” will be exhibited at the Greta Meert Gallery in Brussels until July 25th, 2009.