Guggenheim
Memorial Bench II: Eye cut by flying glass | Jenny Holzer | Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa
Past exhibition

For more than forty years, American artist Jenny Holzer has presented her astringent ideas, arguments, and sorrows in public places and international exhibitions, including the Venice Biennale, the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, and the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Her medium, whether formulated as a T-shirt, a plaque, or an electronic sign, is text. Starting in the 1970s with a series of posters around New York City, and continuing through her recent light projections on landscape and architecture, her practice has rivaled ignorance and violence with humor, kindness, and courage.

From March 22 – September 9, 2019, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao will present an exhibition of Jenny Holzer, the largest to date. Curated by Petra Joos in collaboration with the artist, the show will highlight Frank Gehry's architecture through site-responsive installations. Works will include Truisms and Inflammatory Essays posters with text in five languages, cast plaques, and painted metal signs that reference Holzer's beginnings in street art, as well as engraved benches and stone sarcophagi. Drawings, objects, and ephemera from the artist's archive will complement these early works.

More recent oil paintings and watercolors of publicly released U.S. documents will trace Holzer's response to government redaction and distribution of information after the events of 9/11. New robotic assemblies, especially conceived for the show, will animate electronic signs that scroll text, sometimes illuminating human bones.

The exhibition also will include a selection of works on paper and sculptures by artists who have been influential to Holzer's practice, including Rosa Bonheur, Paul Klee, Louise Bourgeois, Paul Thek, Charles Burchfield, Kiki Smith, Lee Lozano, and Nancy Spero, among others.

Curated by Petra Joos in collaboration with the artist.

Jenny Holzer
Memorial Bench II: Eye cut by flying glass…, 1996 (detail)
Indiana Buff limestone bench
44.1 x 182.9 x 61 cm
Text: Erlauf, 1995
Courtesy the artist
© 2019 Jenny Holzer, member Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY / VEGAP
Photo: Erik Sumption

Artist

jenny holzer

For more than forty years, Jenny Holzer has presented her astringent ideas, arguments, and sorrows in public places and international exhibitions, including 7 World Trade Center, the Venice Biennale, the Guggenheim Museums in New York and Bilbao, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Her medium, whether formulated as a T-shirt, a plaque, or an LED sign, is writing, and the public dimension is integral to the delivery of her work.

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The exhibition

Did you know that...?

DID YOU KNOW THAT...?

As part of the Didaktika project, the museum designs educational spaces and special activities that complement every exhibition, providing tools and resources, both in galleries and online, to facilitate the appreciation and understanding of the works on display.
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FROM THE 1970s TO NOW: JENNY HOLZER IN CONTEXT

Jenny Holzer is a person of carefully chosen words. In the late 1970s, she arrived in New York City at a time of cultural and political revolution. Feminism, racial inequality, poverty, the Vietnam War, and the AIDS epidemic were among key issues of the period.
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