Jenny Holzer  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Jenny Holzer (born 1950 in Gallipolis, Ohio) is an American conceptual artist, best known for her Truisms series.

Contents

Education

She attended Ohio University (in Athens, Ohio), Rhode Island School of Design, and the Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Holzer was originally an abstract artist, focusing on painting and printmaking; after moving to New York City in 1977, she began working with text as art. She was also an active member of the artists group Colab.

Work

Holzer is mostly known for her large-scale public displays that include billboard advertisements, projections on buildings and other architectural structures, as well as digital billboards. The main focus of her work is the use of words and ideas in public space. Originally utilizing street posters, LED signs became her most visible medium, though her diverse practice incorporates a wide array of media including bronze plaques, painted signs, stone benches and footstools, stickers, T-shirts, condoms, paintings, photographs, sound, video, light projection, the Internet, and a Le Mans race car.

Jenny Holzer wrote texts herself for a long time between 1977 and 2001. However since 1993, she has been mainly working with texts written by others. Some of these are literary texts by great authors such as the Polish Nobel laureate Wislawa Szymborska, Henri Cole (USA), Elfriede Jelinek (Austria), Fadhil Al-Azawi (Iraq), Yehuda Amichai (Israel) and Mahmoud Darwish (Palestine).

She also uses texts from different contexts, such as passages from de-classified US Army documents from the war in Iraq. For example, a large LED work presents excerpts from the minutes of interrogations of American soldiers who had committed human rights violations and war crimes in Abu Ghraib, making what was once secret public.

Holzer's works often speak of violence, oppression, sexuality, feminism, power, war and death. Her main concern is to enlighten, bringing to light something thought in silence and was meant to remain hidden.

Recognition

Jenny Holzer was the first woman to represent the United States in the Venice Biennale in 1990, and for her pavilion she was awarded the Leone D'Oro that year. She has been the recipient of several important awards, including the Blair Award, presented by the Art Institute of Chicago in 1982, the Skowhegan Medal for Installation (1994), the Berlin Prize Fellowship (2000), and a diploma of Chevalier from the Order of Arts and Letters from the French government (2002).

See also





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Jenny Holzer" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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