American Art 1961–2001
Walker Art Center Collections

Richard Serra, Prop, 1968. Gift of Penny and Mike Winton, 1977 © Richard Serra / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / Photo Artpil

Palazzo Strozzi presents American Art 1961–2001, a major exhibition taking a new perspective on the history of contemporary art in the United States. The exhibition brings together an outstanding selection of over 80 works by 53 artists including Andy Warhol, Mark Rothko, Sol LeWitt, Louise Nevelson, Roy Lichtenstein, Catherine Opie, Robert Rauschenberg, Richard Serra, Claes Oldenburg, Lorna Simpson, Nam June Paik, Carolee SchneemannMartha RoslerJenny Holzer, Bruce Nauman, Barbara Kruger, Cindy Sherman, Matthew Barney, Kerry James Marshall, Jasper Johns, and many others, exhibited in Florence through a collaboration with the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Exhibiting many formative works for the first time in Italy, the exhibition examines the most important figures and movements that marked the development of American art from the beginning of the Vietnam War to the 9/11 attacks.

 

Andy Warhol, Sixteen Jackies (det.), 1964, Collection Walker Art Center © The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Inc.

Andy Warhol, Campbell’s Tomato, Del Monte peach, Kellogg’s Corn… boxes, 1964. Photo Artpil

Andy Warhol, Electric Chair, 1971 / Photo Artpil

Bruce Conner, COSMIC RAY, 1961 © 2010 Conner Family Trust, San Francisco / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Gift of the artist, 2001. Photo Artpil

Barbara Kruger, Untitled (We will no longer be seen and not heard), detail, 1985. Copyright retained by the artist, Walker Special Purchase Fund, 1985 / Photo Artpil

Barbara Kruger, Untitled (We will no longer be seen and not heard), 1985. Copyright retained by the artist, Walker Special Purchase Fund, 1985 / Photo Artpil

Mark Rothko (Markus Rothkowitz; Dvinsk, 1903–New York 1970) No. 2 1963, Walker Art Center. Gift of the Mark Rothko Foundation, Inc., 1985 © 1998 Kate Rothko Prizel & Christopher Rothko / ARS, New York.  Photo Artpil

Cindy Sherman (Glen Ridge, New Jersey 1954) Untitled #92 1981, Walker Art Center. Art Center Acquisition Fund, 1982 © Cindy Sherman. Courtesy the artist and the Walker Art Center

Donald Judd, Untitled, 1969/1982, Walker Art Center; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Edmond R. Ruben, 1981 / Photo Artpil

Curated by Vincenzo de Bellis (Curator and Associate Director of Programs, Visual Arts, Walker Art Center) and Arturo Galansino (Director General, Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi), the exhibition takes an in-depth look at the breadth of American artistic production: from Pop Art to Minimalism, from Conceptual Art to the Pictures Generation – and including more recent artistic developments in the 1990s and 2000s. Paintings, photographs, videos, sculptures, and art installations propose an unprecedented reinterpretation of forty years of history, exploring the role of art as a powerful tool for addressing such topics as consumerism, mass production, feminism and gender identity, racial issues, and the struggle for civil rights.

American Art 1961–2001 traces a path through these formative decades by showcasing the works of 53 artists, including Andy Warhol, whose celebrated painting Sixteen Jackies (1964) depicts First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy in the wake of the assassination of JFK.

 

Glenn Ligon (New York 1960) Untitled (Stranger in the Village #16) 2000, Walker Art Center. Butler Family Fund, 2000. Photo Artpil

Louise Nevelson (Leah Berliawsky; Pereyaslav, Russian Empire 1899- New York 1988) Sky Cathedral Presence, 1951-1964, Walker Art Center. Dono Judy e Kenneth Dayton, 1969 © Estate of Louise Nevelson. Photo Artpil

Agnes Martin (Maklin, Saskatchewan, Canada 1912– Taos, New Mexico 2004) Untitled#1 1980, Walker Art Center. Gift of Judy and Kenneth Dayton, 1999 © Agnes Martin by SIAE 2021. Photo Artpil

Mike Kelley / Photo Artpil

Robert Indiana (Robert Clark; New Castle, Indiana 1928–Vinalhaven, Maine 2018) The Green Diamond Eat the Red Diamond Die 1962, Walker Art Center. Gift of the T. B. Walker Foundation, 1963 © Robert Indiana By SIAE 2021. Photo Artpil

Robert Longo National Trust, 1981. Photo Ela Bialkowska OKNO studio / Foreground: Sherrie Levine (Hazleton, Pennsylvania 1947) Fountain (after Marcel Duchamp: A.P.) 1991, Minneapolis, Walker Art Center. T. B. Walker Acquisition Fund, 1992 © Sherrie Levine. Courtesy the artist and the Walker Art Center

The era of the Sixties is witnessed through works by masters such as Donald Judd, Bruce Nauman and John Baldessari, figures who became reference points for subsequent generations of artists to redefine the possibilities of art. Artists of a subsequent generation continued to address such topics as the reframing of the male gaze in the work of Cindy Sherman; the appropriation of mass-media images by artists Richard Prince and Barbara Kruger, the denunciation of the stigma of AIDS in the work of Félix González-Torres; or the disquieting narratives of Matthew Barney, whose 1999 video installation Cremaster 2 is shown in an original setting for the first time in Italy.

 

Jasper Johns, from set elements from Walkaround Time, 1968 / Photo Artpil

Lorna Simpson, Wigs (portfolio) 1994, detail, Walker Art Center. T.B.Walker Acquisition Fund, 1995 © Lorna Simpson. Courtesy the artist and the Walker Art Center / Photo Artpil

Mark Bradford / Photo Artpil

Robert Gober (Wallingford, Connecticut 1954) Newspaper 1992, photolithograph on paper, twine. Walker Art Center. T. B. Walker Acquisition Fund, 1994 © Robert Gober, Courtesy Matthew Marks Gallery

Kerry James Marshall (Birmingham, Alabama 1955) Blind Ambition 1990, Walker Art Center. Gift of RBC Wealth Management, in honor of John Taft, 2016 © Kerry James Marshall. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York. Photo Artpil

A special focus in the exhibition is dedicated to artistic developments of the 1990s and 2000s interrogating American identity and featuring the work of such artists as Kerry James Marshall and Kara Walker.

The exhibition is promoted and organized by the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi, Firenze and the Walker Art Center.

 

American Art 1961–2001 / Walker Art Center Collections
May 28 – August 29, 2021 / Palazzo Strozzi
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