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Article

Pakistani, 20th century, male.

Active in Britain.

Born 1935, in Karachi.

Installation artist, painter, sculptor.

Conceptual Art.

Araeen initially studied to be a civil engineer. He has exhibited in Karachi, New York and in a number of British cities. His work often addresses issues facing ethnic groups in Britain. He is also a writer and editor and founded the ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA since 1961.

Born 6 July 1936, in Nagoya (Aichi Prefecture).

Painter.

Conceptual Art.

Neo-Dadaist Organisers group.

Shusaku Arakawa studied medicine and mathematics at Tokyo University (1954-1958) and art at Musashino Art University, Tokyo. He began his career in the 1960s when he concerned himself with the representation of impossible space, which corresponded to Marcel Duchamp’s scientific interest in the fourth dimension. In 1960 he was involved in anti-art and Neo-Dadaism in Tokyo and produced his first happenings....

Article

Filipino, 20th century, male.

Born 1937, in Sampaloc, Manila, Philippines; died 13 April 2013.

Painter, conceptual artist.

Roberto Chabet studied architecture at the University of Santo Tomas and graduated in 1961, the year he held his first solo exhibition, at the Luz Gallery. He achieved early critical success when he won first prize for his painting ...

Article

Chinese, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1986.

Born 1955, in Shanghai; died 13 December 2000.

Assemblage artist, installation artist.

Conceptual Art.

Chen Zhen designed his installations to reflect specific locations. He would juxtapose natural elements such as water, sand, wood and stone with assemblages of day-to-day objects, usually their residue or waste, thus imbuing them with a sort of supplementary existence....

Article

Mary M. Tinti

(b Houston, TX, 1951).

American sculptor, installation and conceptual artist. His multimedia works investigate the pathology of contemporary culture. Mel Chin was born and raised in Houston, Texas to parents of Chinese birth and received his BA in 1975 from the Peabody College in Nashville, Tennessee. The works in Chin’s oeuvre are diverse in both medium and subject, but a consistent undercurrent of social, political, and environmental responsibility runs throughout. Whether a sculpture, film, video game, installation, public project or earthwork, Chin’s artworks consistently targeted a broad spectrum of pressing cultural and ecological interests and spread their message in subtle, if not viral ways.

In the 1980s, Chin produced a number of sculptures that set the stage for his ever-evocative artistic journey. The Extraction of Plenty from What Remains: 1823 (1988–9) is a frequently referenced piece from this period. It is a symbolic encapsulation of the effects of the Monroe Doctrine, referencing the complicated dealings between the US (represented by truncated replicas of White House columns) and Central America (represented by a cornucopia of mahogany branches, woven banana-tree fiber, and a surface layer of hardened blood, mud, and coffee grinds). From the 1990s, however, Chin moved away from strictly gallery-based installations and began creating works that directly engaged contemporary culture in a variety of physical and theoretical landscapes....

Article

Francis Summers

American photographers and conceptual artists of Irish and Israeli birth. Collaborating under a corporate-sounding name, Michael Clegg (b Dublin, 1957) and Martin Guttman (b Jerusalem, 1957) began making photographs together in 1980. Using corporate group portraits as their resource material, they made constructed photographs in the manner of 17th-century Dutch paintings. A Group Portrait of the Executives of a World Wide Company (1980; see 1989 exh. cat., p. 33) shows five suited men seated in a brooding darkness, their heads and hands illuminated in a chiaroscuro effect. The reference to historical paintings is made particularly explicit in The Art Consultants (1986; see 1989 exh. cat., p. 37): the figures are posed directly in front of a canvas so as to mirror the painted figures, illustrating Clegg & Guttman’s proposition that within the hierarchies of power, the essential nature of pose, emblems and dress have remained relatively unchanged for centuries. Pushing these images to the point of indetermination, Clegg & Guttman also occasionally carried out actual commissions (although not always successfully), as well as creating collaged and altered portraits such as ...

Article

Vietnamese-American, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1968, in Ha Tien, Vietnam.

Photographer, video artist, conceptual artist.

In 1978, Dinh Q. Lê fled Vietnam with his family to the United States, where he eventually gained U.S. citizenship. After completing his BA in fine arts at the University of California, Santa Barbara, in ...

Article

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Active since 1972 active in England.

Born 1940, in Jerusalem.

Painter, video artist.

Conceptual Art.

He studied in Tel Aviv and exhibited in Israel from 1968. He has lived in London since 1972.

He has taken part in a number of group exhibitions including the Autumn Salon in Tel Aviv, in ...

Article

Catherine M. Grant

(b Karachi, Pakistan, April 18, 1968).

British film maker, installation artist and conceptual artist of Pakistani birth, active in England. She completed a BFA at Goldsmiths’ College, London, between 1991 and 1994. For her degree show she created Pushed/Pulled (1994; see 1998 exh. cat.), changing the door panels at the entrance to the college’s studios so that they read ‘Pushed’ and ‘Pulled’ rather than ‘Push’ and ‘Pull’. This kind of conceptual slippage is typical of Floyer’s work. In Light (1994; Berne, Ksthalle), a disconnected lightbulb is illuminated by the beams from four slide projectors; the blandly descriptive title, like the work itself, is both truthful and paradoxically misleading, undermining the viewer’s expectations of the object’s functionality. Floyer uses these dislocations to produce situations in which viewers are made to feel very selfconscious about what they should be seeing, often using projections as a means of producing apparent displacements of objects or sounds. In the video ...

Article

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Born 1941, in Shemer Kibbutz.

Painter, performance artist.

Conceptual Art.

Geva has continued to live on the kibbutz where he was born. Virtually self-taught, he painted until 1968. Later, his ‘artistic’ work became more experimental, first visual, then sociological: the way of life on the kibbutz, the self-contained world of its inhabitants, the whole making up both the subject and the material. He exhibited at the Museum of Jerusalem in ...

Article

Anthony Gardner

(b Singapore, July 12, 1959).

Malaysian conceptual artist, active also in Australia. Gill studied at the University of Western Sydney, completing her MA in 2001. Despite working in a range of media, she is best understood as a process-based artist who has consistently explored notions of migration and transformation within material culture. These include the effects of international trade on such everyday activities as cooking and eating. The spiral form of Forking Tongues (1992; Brisbane, Queensland A.G.), for example, entwines Western cutlery and dried chillies from the Americas and Asia, highlighting how foods and utensils from across the globe have come together to transform local cuisines and inform culinary habits. Gill’s later photographic series refer to other understandings of migration, such as the spread of the English language or of capitalist desire throughout South-east Asia in recent decades. For Forest (1998; Sydney, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery; see Chua), Gill cut out words and sentences from books written in English, placed the texts within tropical landscapes and photographed the results before the books’ paper began rotting into the humid environment. For ...

Article

Michael Turner

(b Cluj, Romania, Jan 21, 1947).

Israeli conceptual sculptor. After studying at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem (1966–9) he completed his studies (1969–72) at the Accademia di Belle Arti, Milan. He returned to Israel in 1978, intent on cutting his connections with the Western mainstream to develop an artistic language based on a strong conceptual attitude and opposed to the then dominant trend towards figurative painting. This language was conceived as parallel to textual expressions being formulated at that time in Italy. The relationship between object and text subsequently became more intricate, with the object becoming a syntactical language transforming the text as an interpreter. Although having deliberate echoes of Russian Constructivist structures, Goldstein’s works are not characterized by a stylistic approach, but build on the exchange of conflicting and parallel ideas. In 1978 he began teaching at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design. From this time he used metaphor in its most abstract sense, in order to propose that artists on the periphery, outside Europe and the USA, could give new forms to geographical, social and artistic works. Goldstein defined the three main categories of his work in the ...

Article

Peter A. Nagy

(b Bombay, Aug 26, 1976).

Indian conceptual artist. Gupta studied sculpture at the Sir J.J. School of Art in Bombay, graduating in 1997. Gupta was the Indian artist who most explicitly embraced digital and web-based art practice. Her first work to gain wide attention in India was Untitled (2002), a video of the artist in multiple, watching the viewer in a confrontational and provocative manner. Her works address the manipulation of the lower classes through religion, politics or commerce, often employing irony and humour. Gupta created websites as art works, addressing subjects such as the exploitation of labour in diamond mines (Diamonds and You, 2000), romantic and matrimonial connections fostered by the internet (Sentiment-Express.com, 2001) and an ironic take on pan-religious devotion (Blessed-Bandwidth.net, 2003, commissioned by Tate Modern, London). In each work, the artist used the anonymity that cyber-space provides to focus on societal changes of behaviour and the redefinition of artistic possibilities....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1944, in Niigata Prefecture.

Painter.

Mono-ha (school of things); Conceptual Art.

Honda Shingo specialises in conceptual art and photographic collage. After interrupting his studies at Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music in mid-programme, he had his first solo shows in Tokyo in ...

Article

Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in France from 1989.

Born 1954, in Xiamen (Fujian).

Installation artist.

Conceptual Art.

Huang Yongping graduated from the fine arts academy of Zhejiang in 1982. He was active in the Xiamen Dada group. He left China for Paris in ...

Article

Mary Chou

(b Bethlehem, 1970).

Palestinian conceptual artist. Jacir’s works use a variety of media including film, photography, installation, performance, video, sound, sculpture and painting. Jacir was raised in Saudi Arabia and attended high school in Rome, Italy. She received her BA from the University of Dallas, Irving, TX in 1992, her MFA from the Memphis College of Art, Memphis, TN in 1994, and participated in the Whitney Independent Study Program from 1998 to 1999. She became a professor at the International Academy of Art, Palestine in Ramallah in 2007. Jacir’s conceptual works explore the physical and psychological effects of social and political displacement and exile, primarily how they affect the Palestinian community. Her work investigated the impact of Israeli action on the Palestinian people and countered representations of Palestinians in the press as primarily militant. Jacir often collaborated with members of the Palestinian community, both local and international, in the creation of her works....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1940, in Kobe.

Painter, sculptor of assemblages. Multimedia.

Conceptual Art.

Kawaguchi studied at the Tama School of Fine Art in Tokyo, graduating in 1962. He teaches at the University of Akashi. Kawaguchi’s interest in conceptual art appeared early in his career. Since then, he has used the new media of light, video, photography and film. He creates assemblages of markers arranged in a space, some of which can be electronically stimulated. Interested in making his art available outside normal gallery and museum spaces, he has produced two works for Japanese high schools: ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA fromc.1962.

Born 1933, in Kariya (Aichi); died late June 2014, in New York City.

Painter, collage artist. Multimedia.

Conceptual Art, Mail Art.

Kawara is a self-taught artist. After painting his early works in Japan, he emigrated to the USA in the early 1960s. His first works from the 1950s express a desire to exploit the grotesque, as in the swollen female torsoes surrounded by scattered, apparently floating limbs of the ...

Article

Akira Tatehata

(b Kariya, Aichi Prefect., Jan 2, 1933; d New York, June 2014).

Japanese painter, draughtsman, and conceptual artist, active in the USA. After graduating from Kariya High School in 1951, he moved to Tokyo, exhibiting at the Yomiuri Independent Exhibitions. His sensibility for a cold materialism became apparent in his series of drawings Bathroom, of dismembered grotesque nude bodies (1953–4; Tokyo, N. Mus. Mod. A.). Kawara went to Mexico in 1959 and travelled through Europe. He settled in New York in 1965. His renowned series of Date Paintings (from 1965), made in various cities on his travels, juxtapose a detail from a local newspaper with a simple record of the date in typographical letters and numbers on monochrome canvases using acrylic. The paintings’ principal meaning was that the artist and viewer shared the numbers that signified a date they both had lived. In the series of telegrams in the 1970s, which sent the message ‘I am still alive’ to his friends, he used the verification of his own existence as a statement in a medium whose abstraction, regardless of the artist’s hand, paradoxically gave his work a tense reality. His other work in book form, ...

Article

Japanese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 24 April 1948, in Osaka.

Painter, draughtsman, sculptor.

Conceptual Art.

Kitatsuji Yoshihisa studied at the Tama Art School, Tokyo, from 1968 to 1972. The next year he travelled to the West, visiting France, Germany, Italy and The Netherlands. He lives and works in Osaka. His work is first and foremost a reflection on painting itself, how the image fades and wastes away; at the same time, his work is concerned with the artist’s eye, which gives the image its quality. He uses photocopying techniques to produce modified repetitions of an original drawing....