John Baldessari juxtaposes material, form, and text to create a challenging visual and narrative expression. With a tongue-in-cheek approach, he skews the traditional expectations of an image’s function, requiring the viewer to act and react to each wryly-composed drawing. Each piece exists collage-like: paint or ink acts as if scissors and glue, metaphorically cutting and layering shapes and colors. Color relations pulse across the paper as he interrupts deeply monochromatic scenes with vibrant orbs, forming matte renditions of a deconstructed figure or unassuming object. Baldessari remains a master of American conceptual art, both as educator and artist.
He received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from San Diego State College, and now lives and works in Santa Monica, California. He has mounted over 200 solo exhibitions and 1,000 group exhibitions in the United States and Europe. His work is in collections worldwide, including Museum of Modern Art and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Tate Collection, London; and Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California. He has been awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement from the Venice Biennale, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement from the College Art Association, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York.