Photo: Tim Knox

Holzer, Jenny

Gallipolis, Ohio, 1950

Jenny Holzer | Artistas | Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa



Born on July 29.


Enrolls at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, and takes summer courses at Ohio University.


Studies drawing and printmaking for a year at the University of Chicago.


Graduates from Ohio University with a major in drawing and printmaking.


Travels to France and Spain.


Enrolls at the Rhode Island School of Design, receiving a master’s degree in fine arts two years later.
Begins to use language in her work.


Moves to New York after being accepted into the Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Creates the Truisms series of aphoristic texts, which she prints and hangs anonymously on walls in Manhattan.


Exhibits the work Painted Room at the Institute for Art and Urban Resources, P.S. 1 in New York.


Publishes the book A Little Knowledge.


Creates The Living Series with artist Peter Nadin, a frequent collaborator. The series is exhibited for the first time at Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle in Munich and later at Galerie Chantal Crousel in Paris.
Publishes Black Book.


Begins to use LED screens in her work.
The Living Series 
is displayed at Barbara Gladstone Gallery in New York.
Participates in Documenta 7 in Kassel, Germany. Receives the Blair Award from the Art Institute of Chicago.


The Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia holds an exhibition of Holzer’s work.
Publishes the book Truisms and Essays.


Exhibits at the Rotterdam Kunststichting and the Kunsthalle Basel.
Begins The Survival Series, made of silver and black tapes, sometimes accompanied by computer-created images.


Begins the Under a Rock series, inscribing them on granite benches, her first use of this medium.


Exhibits the Signs series in a traveling exhibition that opens at the Des Moines Art Center in Des Moines, Iowa, and later travels to the Aspen Art Museum in Aspen, Colorado; Artspace in San Francisco; Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago; and the List Visual Arts Center at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


Exhibits signs and benches at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in New York.
The Signs and Under a Rock series are displayed at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London.
Creates Art Breaks, featuring texts from various earlier series, which are broadcast at random intervals on MTV.


The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York presents an exhibition of Holzer’s work.
The Laments series is exhibited at the Dia Art Foundation in New York.


Represents the United States at the XLIV Biennale di Venezia, where she wins the Leone d’Oro for best pavilion. The installation is later exhibited at the Städtische Kunsthalle
Düsseldorf; Louisiana Museum for Moderne Kunst in Humlebaek, Denmark; Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York; Walker Art Center in Minneapolis; and Dallas Museum ofArt in Dallas.


Exhibits at the Ydessa Hendeles Art Foundation in Toronto.


Exhibits at Zamek Ujazdowski in Warsaw and the Haus der Kunst in Munich.


The Contemporary Art Center in Mito and the Art Gallery Atrium in Fukuoka in Japan hold exhibitions of Holzer’s work.
Receives the Skowhegan Medal for Installation from the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine and an honorary doctorate from the University of Ohio in Athens.


Exhibits the Laments series at the Williams College Museum of Art in Williamstown, Massachusetts.


Lustmord, an installation devised from three hundred human bones, is exhibited at the Kunstmuseum des Kantons Thurgau in Warth, Switzerland, and the following year at the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston.
Receives the Crystal Award from the World Economic Forum in Geneva.


Creates the work Installation for Bilbao for the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao’s inaugural exhibition.


Exhibits at the Instituto Cultural Itaú in São Paulo.


The Centro Cultural do Banco do Brasil in Rio de Janeiro organizes an exhibition of Holzer’s work.


The Fundación Proa in Buenos Aires exhibits several of the artist’s installations.

Doctorate of Arts, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts, 2000.


Exhibits at the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin and at CAPC, Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux.
Also presents an exhibition at the Chapelle Saint-Louis de la Pitié-Salpêtrière for the Festival d’Automne in Paris. Receives the BZ-Kulturpreis, awarded by the Berliner Zeitungin Berlin.


Named Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government.
Receives the Kaiserring prize from the city of Goslar, Germany. In conjunction with the award, the Mönchehaus Museum für moderne Kunst Goslar presents an exhibition of her work.


Doctorate of Fine Arts, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, 2003.


The Housatonic Museum of Art in Bridgeport, Connecticut, presents the exhibition Interface: Jenny Holzer and Media Art.
Exhibits at the Kunsthaus Bregenz in Bregenz, Austria. Receives the Public Art Network Award from Americans for the Arts in Washington, D.C. and New York.


Doctorate of Fine Arts, New School University, New York, 2005.


Selected, together with Daniel Buren and Liam Gillick, to participate in a competition to create an installation integrated with the Museum Architecture at the Puente la Salve in
Bilbao to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.


Participates in the 52nd Biennale di Venezia.
The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams presents the exhibition Jenny Holzer: Projections , showing new paintings and, for the first time in the United States,
installations comprised of indoor projections.


The exhibition Jenny Holzer: PROTECT PROTECT opens at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and later travels to the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and Fondation Beyeler in Riehen, Switzerland.
Creates the installation For the Guggenheim at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Participates in the exhibition The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco; the exhibition later travels to Daikanyama Hillside Terrace in Tokyo and the Fundación Canal in Madrid.


Doctorate of Fine Arts, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts, 2009.


Installs projections at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, Massachusetts, and the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Oregon. The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and the Fondation Beyeler in Basel, co-organize the exhibition Jenny Holzer, which will later travel to the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, UK, and the DHC/ART in Montreal. Her work is shown at the Skarstedt Gallery in New York; the Galerie Yvon Lambert in Paris; and the Talbot Rice Gallery at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.


Installs a projection at the Old Brewery in Poznan, Poland. The Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin inaugurates an exhibition dedicated to her work. Her work is part of group exhibitions shown at the Skulpturenpark Köln in Cologne; the Museu de Arte Contemporânea Serralves in Porto; the Museum on the Seam in Jerusalem; the Stedelijk Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, the Netherlands; and the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen in Düsseldorf.

American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2011.


Exhibitions at L&M Arts in Los Angeles and Venice, and Sprüth Magers Lee in London.
Endgame exhibition at Sprüth Magers in Berlin, then travelling to Skarstedt Fine Art in New York.


Exhibitions at Pearl Lam Galleries in Hong Kong and The Rooms Art Gallery in Saint John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador (Canada).


New exhibition at Cheim & Read, New York.
Projeto Parede: Jenny Holzer at the São Paulo Museum of Modern Art (Brazil).


Exhibitions at Hauser & Wirth Somerset in Bruton (UK) and Barbara Krakow Gallery in Boston.
Jenny Holzer: War Paintings exhibition at Museo Correr in Venice.


Works by Holzer at the 56th October Salon The Pleasure of Love, Belgrade Cultural Centre.
Jenny Holzer: Are You Alive? exhibition in Ibiza, organized by Lune Rouge and Art Projects Ibiza, with the collaboration of Sprüth Magers.

Officier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Ministère de la Culture, France, 2016.

Honorary Academician, Royal Academy of the Arts, London, 2016.


Exhibitions at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) in North Adams, Massachusetts, and Hauser & Wirth in Zürich.
New exhibition at Blenheim Palace in Woodstock, Oxfordshire (UK), including On War, a projection mapping event on the exterior of the building.

International Medal of Arts, U.S. Department of State, Washington, DC, 2017.


Tate Modern in London presents Artist Rooms: Jenny Holzer.

Los Angeles; New York; Washington, DC; Miami, Florida; and Tallahassee, Florida: It Is Guns, Mar. 9, 2018. Repeated in Chicago; Los Angeles; New York; Miami; and Dallas, Texas, Mar. 16; New York, Mar. 23; Chicago; Washington, DC; and Atlanta, Georgia, Mar. 24; New York, Apr. 28; New York, Aug. 16–17; Washington, DC, Aug. 19; New York, Aug. 24–25; Washington, DC, Sept. 11; New York and Washington, DC, Sept. 13; Columbus, Ohio, Sept. 20 and Dec. 27; Albany, New York, Oct. 5–6; and Miami, Dec. 4 and 6.

American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, 2018.


Creates installation for GAMeC, Palazzo della Ragione, in Bergamo, Italy.

The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao presents the exhibition Jenny Holzer: Thing Indescribable.

Washington, DC: IMPEACH, Oct. 15, 2019. Repeated in New York, Oct. 16 and 29; Washington, DC, Oct. 30; and Miami, Florida, Dec. 5.

Rockefeller Center, New York: VIGIL, Oct. 10–12, 2019


National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul: FOR YOU: Jenny Holzer, Nov. 23, 2019–July 5, 2020.

University of Chicago: YOU BE MY ALLY, Oct. 5–Dec. 4, 2020.

Washington, DC; Atlanta, Macon, and Columbus, Georgia; Charlotte, Durham, and Raleigh, North Carolina; Detroit and Flint, Michigan; Madison and Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Miami, Florida; Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and fourteen other U.S. cities: YOU VOTE, Aug. 31–Nov. 8, 2020 and Dec. 14, 2020–Jan. 5, 2021.