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joan jonas

biography

Joan Jonas was born in New York in 1936, where she still lives and works.

Jonas is one of the most significant artists in the history of video and performance. Beginning in the 1960s, she placed female subjectivity at the center of her work, employing a complex linguistic repertoire including gestures, storytelling and images in movement. A tireless experimenter, Jonas explores the possibilities inherent to the interdisciplinary nature of art, a characteristic that has made her a point of reference for a young generation of artists with whom she has established an intense and generous relationship of exchange. Continuity among those aspects of daily life and those connected to the production of her works comes to fruition in frequent interaction with friends and artists from different milieu; the most important of these include collaborations with visual artists Peter Campus and Richard Serra, the performer Ragani Haas and the musicians Alvin Curran and Jason Moran. Right from the start the artist began elaborating an individual language aimed at continuous renewal and the translation of diverse media. The transitory nature of her “actions” and the variety of expressive methods she utilizes – including performance, video and installations – create a fantasticum that places the artist’s figure and the experience at the centre.

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Joan Jonas was born in New York in 1936, where she still lives and works.

Jonas is one of the most significant artists in the history of video and performance. Beginning in the 1960s, she placed female subjectivity at the center of her work, employing a complex linguistic repertoire including gestures, storytelling and images in movement. A tireless experimenter, Jonas explores the possibilities inherent to the interdisciplinary nature of art, a characteristic that has made her a point of reference for a young generation of artists with whom she has established an intense and generous relationship of exchange. Continuity among those aspects of daily life and those connected to the production of her works comes to fruition in frequent interaction with friends and artists from different milieu; the most important of these include collaborations with visual artists Peter Campus and Richard Serra, the performer Ragani Haas and the musicians Alvin Curran and Jason Moran. Right from the start the artist began elaborating an individual language aimed at continuous renewal and the translation of diverse media. The transitory nature of her “actions” and the variety of expressive methods she utilizes – including performance, video and installations – create a fantasticum that places the artist’s figure and the experience at the centre.

She received her BA from Mount Holyoke College in 1958 and her MFA from Columbia University in 1965. In 2019 the Kyoto City University of Arts Art Gallery presented Five Rooms For Kyoto: 1972 - 2019, Jonas’ largest solo exhibition in Japan. In 2018 Tate Modern devoted a major survey exhibition (traveling to Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art, Porto), performance program and film screenings to the artist’s work. In 2015 Jonas represented the United States at the 56th Venice Biennale. In 2009 the artist was awarded the Guggenheim’s first annual Lifetime Achievement Award. Jonas has had retrospectives at HangarBicocca, Milan (2014), the Queens Museum of Art, New York (2003), Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart Germany (2000), and at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (1994). She was represented in Documenta V, VI, VII in Kassel, Germany. She was commissioned to develop an installation and a subsequent performance entitled “Lines in the Sand” for Documenta XI. It was recreated at the Tate Modern in London, and the Kitchen in New York in 2004.

Jonas has also exhibited in solo shows or performed at institutions such as: Tate Modern, London; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Sigmund Freud Museum, Vienna, Austria; Dia:Beacon, Beacon, New York; Fundacion Botin, Santander, Spain; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain; Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Spain; Le Plateau and Jeu de Paume / Hotel de Sully, Paris, France; Renaissance Society, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois; CCA Kitakyushu, Kitakyushu, Japan.

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images

Installations

Stream or River Flight or Pattern II, 2016

Multimedia installation: tinted walls, wall drawings, 2 video projections

Dimensions variable

Stream or River Flight or Pattern II, 2016

Multimedia installation: tinted walls, wall drawings, 2 video projections

Dimensions variable

Stream or River Flight or Pattern II, 2016

Multimedia installation: tinted walls, wall drawings, 2 video projections

Dimensions variable

Mirror Pieces Installation II, 1969/2014

Multimedia installation: mirror performance film on DVD, 3 mirrors, 2 mirror costumes

360 × 172 × 146 cm

Reading Dante IV, 1976/2010

Installation view at Galleria Raffaella Cortese, via Stradella 7, Milan, 2010

Multimedia installation: 4 videos, 3 wall drawings, 2 tables with plexiglass, 2 benches, 1 chalkboard, 1 hanging lamp, 2 floor lamps, 15 drawings

Dimensions variable

Reading Dante IV, 1976/2010

Installation view at Galleria Raffaella Cortese, via Stradella 7, Milan, 2010

Multimedia installation: 4 videos, 3 wall drawings, 2 tables with plexiglass, 2 benches, 1 chalkboard, 1 hanging lamp, 2 floor lamps, 15 drawings

Dimensions variable

Video works

Flawless Decoys, 2017

Single-channel video (color, sounds)

24'07'' looped

FUTURE LOT: Reading Dante, 2008

Video

6'25''

Mirror Improvisation, 2005

Single-channel video (color, sounds)

6'33'' looped

Wolf Lights, 2004-2005

Single-channel video (color, sounds)

2'49'' looped

Drawings

Untitled from Reanimation performance, 2014

Ink on paper

74,5 × 105 cm

Photo: Lorenzo Palmieri

Untitled from Reanimation performance, 2014

Ink on paper

74,5 × 105 cm

Photo: Lorenzo Palmieri

Untitled, 2017

oil stick on paper

97,1 × 69,85 cm; 107 × 94,4 cm framed

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

21 × 30 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

21 × 30 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

29,3 × 20,5 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

29 × 20 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

29,5 × 20 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

28 × 39 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

21 × 30 cm

Untitled, 2015

Ink on paper

30 × 30 cm

Untitled from Reanimation performance, 2014

Chalk on paper

126 × 106 cm

Untitled from Reanimation performance, 2014

Chalk on paper

25 × 50 cm

Photo: Lorenzo Palmieri

Untitled from Reanimation performance, 2014

Ink on paper

29 × 37 cm

public exhibitions

Kyoto City University of Arts Art Gallery @KCUA

Kyoto

Joan Jonas. Five Rooms For Kyoto: 1972–2019

14.12.2019 – 2.2.2020

Photo by Takeru Koroda, courtesy of Kyoto City University of Arts

ROHM Theatre

Kyoto

Joan Jonas. Reanimation

12.12 – 12.12.2019

Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue, courtesy of ROHM Theatre Kyoto

Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art

Porto

Joan Jonas

25.5 – 1.9.2019

Photo: Courtesy of Serralves © Filipe Braga

Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art

Porto

Joan Jonas

25.5 – 1.9.2019

Photo: Courtesy of Serralves © Filipe Braga

Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art

Porto

Joan Jonas

25.5 – 1.9.2019

Photo: Courtesy of Serralves © Filipe Braga

Walker Art Center

Minneapolis

The Body Electric

30.3 – 21.7.2019

Photo: Bobby Rogers. Courtesy: Walker Art Center, Minneapolis

Ocean Space

Chiesa di San Lorenzo

Venice

Joan Jonas, Moving Off the Land II

24.3 – 29.9.2019

Copyright: © Photo Enrico Fiorese, TBA21-Academy

Ocean Space

Chiesa di San Lorenzo

Venice

Joan Jonas, Moving Off the Land II

24.3 – 29.9.2019

Copyright: © Photo Enrico Fiorese, TBA21-Academy

Remai Modern

Saskatoon

Joan Jonas: Videos

26.2 – 26.5.2019

Photo: Blaine Campbell

Remai Modern

Saskatoon

Joan Jonas: Videos

26.2 – 26.5.2019

Photo: Blaine Campbell

Remai Modern

Saskatoon

Joan Jonas: Videos

26.2 – 26.5.2019

Photo: Blaine Campbell

Fenway Gallery

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Boston

Joan Jonas: I Know Why They Left,

23.1 – 30.10.2019

Photo: © Stewart Clements/Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

TATE Modern

London

They Come to Us without a Word II

14.3 – 5.8.2018


Photo: Moira Ricci

TATE Modern

London

Joan Jonas

14.3 – 5.8.2018

Photo: Thomas Müller

TATE Modern

Joan Jonas

14.3 – 5.8.2018

Photo: Serafina Neville

Mount Holyoke College Art Museum

South Hadley, Massachusetts

Promise of the Infinite: Joan Jonas and the Mirror

17.7.2018 – 16.6.2019

Photo: © Laura Shea

press

Joan Jonas

Giulia Bortoluzzi

L'Officiel Art

May 14, 2019

Joan Jonas

Liam Gillick

ArtReview Asia

March 2018

Joan Jonas: All at Once

Lisa Cohen

The New York Time Style Megazine

April 5, 2015

Joan Jonas

Paola Nicolin

Artforum

2010

Joan Jonas by Karin Schneider

Karin Schneider

Bomb

June 1, 2010

publications

Joan Jonas: I Know Why They Left

Pieranna Cavalchini

Corraini

Milano

2019

Jonas Jonas

Julienne Lorz, Andrea Lissoni and João Ribas

Hirmer Verlag

Munich

2018

Joan Jonas Is on Our Mind

Edited by Frances Richard

CCA Wattis

San Francisco

2017

In the Shadow a Shadow: The Work of Joan Jonas

Edited by Joan Simon

Gregory R. Miller & Co.

New York

2015

Joan Jonas: They Come to Us Without a Word

Paul C. Ha, Ute Meta Bauer, Ann Reynolds, Marina Warner,Ingrid Schaffner

Gregory R. Miller & Co.

New York

2015