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Article

French, 20th – 21st century, female.

Active in France.

Born 11 August 1950, in New York.

Installation artist, photographer. Multimedia.

Art Narratif.

Aballéa studied epistemology. She lives and works in Paris. Aballéa's work stages natural phenomena and scientific descriptions entirely of her own invention, which she describes using writings in the form of tales. Her work generally involves an environment in which light has a predominant place: 'In my work, I like to tell stories. I tell them through space, image, situation and text. I don't believe in any defined limitation between the real and the unreal, but rather a large, fluctuating zone of possibilities. My works are situated in this large zone.' She willingly refers to Borgès and Lewis Carroll, provoking a mêlée between elements of reality and textual fiction. She often uses photographs re-touched with pastel colours which she accompanies with texts....

Article

Yugoslav, 20th–21st century, female.

Active in the Netherlands.

Born 30 November 1946, in Belgrade (now in Serbia).

Performance artist. Multimedia.

Conceptual Art, Body Art.

Marina Abramovic studied at the fine arts academy in Belgrade from 1965 to 1970 and began executing her first performance pieces, films and videos between ...

Article

Francis Summers

revised by Jessica Santone

(b Belgrade, Nov 30, 1946).

Serbian performance artist, video artist and installation artist. She attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade (1965–70) before completing her post-diploma studies at the Academy of Fine Arts, Zagreb, in 1972. Her early works included sound recordings installed on bridges, paintings of truck crashes, and experiments with conceptual photography (see Widrich, pp. 80–97). In her first significant performance, Rhythm 10 (1973), she repeatedly and rapidly stabbed the spaces between her fingers with various knives. Later, in Rhythm 0 (1974; see Ward, pp. 114–30), she invited gallery visitors to choose from 72 available objects to use on her body, as she stood unresponsive for 6 hours. Her infamous performance Thomas’ Lips (1975; see M. Abramović and others, pp. 98–105), in which she cut, flagellated, and froze herself, established her practice as one that dramatically explored the physical limits of the human body, as seen in the work of Gena Pane or Chris Burden (...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

(b Hameenlinna, Finland, 1959).

Finnish film maker and video artist. She studied at Helsinki University (1980–85), the London College of Printing (1990–91) and then at both UCLA and the American Film Institute, Los Angeles (1994–5). In 1990 she was awarded the Paulo Foundation Prize for Young Artist of the Year. After experimentation with photography, installation art and performance art, Ahtila turned to film and video in the 1990s. The three mini-films Me/We, Okay and Gray (1993) each lasting 90 seconds and written and directed by her, were shown separately and as a trilogy, as trailers in cinemas, on television during commercial breaks and in art galleries. They are noted for their use of narrative conventions derived from film, television and advertising, through which they explore questions of identity and group relations. Ahtila’s main preoccupation with narrative and what she terms ‘human dramas’ was continued in the film ...

Article

Greek, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in Germany.

Born 1954, in Athens.

Draughtsman, engraver, sculptor, video artist. Multimedia.

Michalis Arfaras first studied painting at the school of fine arts in Athens between 1972 and 1974. He continued his studies at the college of fine arts in Brunswick in Germany where he specialised in engraving and produced book illustrations and comic strips. He now lives and works in Hildesheim where he teaches graphic art at the university....

Article

Kate Sloan

(b Bath, Oct 26, 1934).

English conceptual artist, writer, and educator. Ascott was a leading figure in the fields of cybernetic, telematics, and interactive art starting in the 1960s. After finishing school, he completed his National Service in RAF Fighter Command between 1953 and 1955, an experience that had an enduring influence upon his development as an artist. Following his military service, Ascott trained at King’s College at the University of Durham campus in Newcastle (1955–1959) under Victor Pasmore and Richard Hamilton. He quickly assimilated the core lessons of his teachers, who were both leading figures in the Basic Design movement in British art education. This pedagogical approach used a grammar of abstract form as the basis for shared preliminary courses for art and design students. As a student he won a scholarship to visit Paris, where he met with the sculptor Nicolas Schöffer. Upon graduation Ascott was employed as a studio demonstrator at King’s College (...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1934, in Fontenay-aux-Roses.

Painter (mixed media), collage artist, sculptor, draughtsman. Multimedia.

After meeting Yves Klein in 1957, Bernard Aubertin produced his first red monochrome works. He varied his methods of applying the paint, using in turn a spatula, knives, forks and spoons. Out of this search for a different density of paint, he created an art which was constantly being renewed by the artist's actions and in the eye of the spectator. From ...

Article

Spanish, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1957, in Bilbao.

Sculptor, installation artist. Multimedia.

Txomin Badiola lives and works in Bilbao and spent eight years in New York during the 1990s. He produces large-scale pieces in steel with smooth flat geometric surfaces supported by feet and posts, giving them the appearance of constructions. Alongside his sculptures, he also creates installations that make use of other media, including video, photography and sound and that incorporate elements of popular culture, such as the cinema of Jean-Luc Godard, Fassbinder and Pasolini. His work has been shown in solo exhibitions, including: in ...

Article

(b Geneva, Feb 25, 1872; d Lausanne, Jan 1, 1938).

Swiss painter and multimedia artist . From 1890/91 she studied under Hugues Bovy (1841–1903) and Denise Sarkissof at the Ecole d’Art in Geneva. A travel scholarship enabled her to study in Munich for a year. From 1904 until the outbreak of World War I Bailly lived in Paris, where she associated with Cubist artists, including Albert Gleizes, Jean Metzinger, Fernand Léger, Marie Laurencin and Sonia Lewitska (1882–1914). From 1905 to 1926 she exhibited regularly at the Salon d’Automne. From 1906 to 1910 her work was influenced by Fauvism, and from 1910 she became interested in Cubism and Futurism: Equestrian Fantasy with Pink Lady (1913; Zurich, Gal. Strunskaja) is reminiscent of the work of Gino Severini or Franz Marc in its rhythmic movement and planar fragmentation of horses and riders into coloured patterns. Other paintings of this period that are also indebted to these movements include ...

Article

(Davidovich)

(b Kherson, Ukraine, Jan 1, 1888; d France, 1944).

Ukrainian painter and multimedia artist . He studied painting in Odessa, before enrolling at the Academy of Arts in St Petersburg in 1905. His proximity in the mid-1900s to the artists of the nascent avant-garde, especially David Burlyuk and Vladimir Burlyuk, was of decisive importance to his stylistic development. Contributing to The Link (Kiev, 1908) and their other exhibitions in Moscow, Kiev and St Petersburg, he supported their stand against Realism and the Academy, favouring a brightly coloured post-Impressionism reminiscent of Georges Seurat and Louis Valtat.

In 1910 Baranoff-Rossiné moved to Paris where he lived for a number of years, exhibiting at the Salon des Indépendants. He also travelled widely in Germany and Scandinavia. He quickly elaborated an experimental style that relied both on Cubism, especially as interpreted by Albert Gleizes and Jean Metzinger (e.g. his Forge, 1911; Paris, Pompidou), and on the colour theories of Robert Delaunay and Sonia Delaunay (e.g. his ...

Article

French, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 25 March 1952, in Tulle.

Installation artist. Multimedia.

Neo-Conceptual Art.

Bazile worked under the name of Bazilebustamente from 1983 to 1987. At an exhibition at the Musée National d'Art Moderne in Paris in 1982, he installed four signs visible both from the outside and the inside: a tobacconist's sign for smell, a restaurant sign for taste, a locksmith's sign to say, perhaps, that each individual possesses the key, and for sight, optician's spectacles. Bazile's work is subversive, denouncing the mannerisms and rules of the artistic world. He presents familiar objects and signals in order to enter into contact with a public dimension, but without always directly addressing the uninitiated. He took part in collective exhibitions under the name of Bazile: ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Sculptors, installation artists. Multimedia.

This group takes its name from the surnames of Bernard Bazile and Jean-Marc Bustamante who signed their works in this way in 1982 at the Musée Cantini in Marseilles, at the Galerie Croussel-Hussenot in Paris in 1984...

Article

Croat, 20th century, male.

Active in Great Britain since 1991.

Video artist. Multimedia.

Breda Beban is from Zagreb. He settled in London in 1991 and produces videos.

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1937, in Paris.

Painter (mixed media), draughtsman, installation artist, video artist. Multimedia.

Jean-Pierre Bertrand was the winner of the French state prize for art in 1990. He lives and works in Paris.

His largely unclassifiable work - paintings and installations, often featuring highly unorthodox materials - holds a special place in French contemporary art. Cameraman turned artist, Bertrand's work is indeed reminiscent of film, often featuring a series of rigourously 'framed' elements unfolding along a wall surface. Since ...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

(b Birmingham, September 25, 1970).

English photographer and video artist. Billingham graduated from the University of Sunderland in 1994 and in the same year took part in his first group exhibition at the Barbican Art Gallery, London. The series of photographs for which he has become known shows the activities of his family at home. Taken over a period of years beginning in 1990 and initially intended as source material for paintings, these photographs are a stark, painful and often humorous documentation of the emotional, sometimes violent relationship of his parents and brother. They are noted for the extraordinary sympathy with which they explore their subjects and the domestic environment. Both the black-and-white and colour prints are mounted on aluminium, unframed, and untitled, suggesting that they are to be seen as a series rather than as isolated images. The images were published together for the first time in book form in 1996. In the following year he won the Citibank Photography Prize and was included in the exhibition ...

Article

French, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1960.

Installation artist, painter. Multimedia.

Blaussyld presents installations made up of video recorder, table, mirror, speakers, texts and photocopies. He took part in 1994 in the exhibition Port of Call, Stopover, Stopoff ( Escale, Stopover, Tussenstop) at the Musée d'Art Moderne in Villeneuve d'Ascq. He has shown his works in solo exhibitions, including in ...

Article

French, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1955, in Brest.

Photographer. Multimedia.

David Boéno started his career as a newspaper photographer between 1979 and 1987, collaborating on various daily papers and reviews, and on artists' catalogues. He also executed portraits of French artists at work, exhibited in Nantes in ...

Article

Dutch, 20th century, male.

Born 28 January 1934, in Leerdam.

Painter, draughtsman, video artist. Multimedia.

Conceptual Art, Mail Art.

Marinus Boezem lived and worked in Holland; he embarked on his artistic career by exhibiting a section of a Dutch polder in 1960. Following this 'statement', which would have done credit even to Marcel Duchamp, he discovered what he termed the 'plasticity of air': in ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 6 September 1944, in Paris.

Assemblage artist. Multimedia.

Neo-Conceptual Art.

Christian Boltanski is a lecturer at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. In 1990 he was awarded the Grand Prix National for sculpture. Until 1966-1967 he realised very large-scale works on the theme ...

Article

Elaine O’Brien

(b Mombasa, Kenya, Nov 2, 1962).

German multi-media installation and performance artist of Kenyan birth. Von Bonin is known for collaborative, richly associative and perplexing spaces full of artworks that suggest Alice-in-Wonderland narratives and evoke Claes Oldenburg’s playful relational strategies.

Von Bonin attained art world prominence soon after her first New York solo show in 1991. Her puckish neo-feminist conceptual art draws largely upon her experiences and friendships in the Cologne art world and neighborhood art scene. Von Bonin’s work challenges traditional stereotypes of the artist as male genius, creating art alone in his studio. The prestige of the artist’s signature is mocked in ‘solo’ shows such as her exhibition The Cousins (2000), held in Brunswick, which featured a large library installation by the artist Nils Norman (b 1966). Von Bonin arranged many installation events with fellow artists, musicians and writers, in which she played the role of curator-impresario as well as object maker. In her work different media and expressive idioms are re-mixed, the world of popular music in particular being integral to her ...