You must first login or register to follow this artist. X
HomePage Artists

b. 1960, USA

Glenn Ligon Biography

Glenn Ligon is an artist based in New York City who employs painting, sculpture, neon, photography, installation and digital media in his work. He is also a writer and exhibition curator. His work focuses not only on his own experiences of being a gay, African-American man, but on the broader perceptions and representations of blackness and homosexuality in contemporary and historical American society and culture. Ligon is credited as one of the originators of the term 'Post-Black', which emerged in discussion with Thelma Golden and came to public attention in Freestyle, an exhibition Golden curated at The Studio Museum in Harlem in 2001, and which at its core is the philosophy of artists who, though they are engaged with issues of blackness, work to avoid being seen as simply black artists.

Read More

As an artist fascinated by networks of cultural meanings, Ligon often uses text in his work. Among his best-known works are the text-based paintings that he began making in the late 1980s, in which he stencils fragments of racially charged text in oil stick on canvas or paper. These have quoted sources as different as the comedian Richard Pryor and Ralph Ellison, author of Invisible Man. Ligon's neon works are also text-based and include Warm Broad Glow (2005), which features Gertrude Stein's phrase 'negro sunshine', and A Small Band (2015), which quotes the words, 'blues', 'blood' and 'bruise' from composer Steve Reich's 1966 piece, Come Out.

Ligon's tendency to quote other artists' work has led him into the domain of exhibition curation, first with Encounters and Collisions at Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham, England in 2015, and also in Blue Black at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation in St Louis in 2017.

Ligon's public profile was boosted by a successful 2011 retrospective AMERICA, which was staged at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, and then toured to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. His work is in the permanent collections of major museums across the United States.

Robert Ayers | Ocula | 2017

Glenn Ligon Featured Artworks

Correspondence by Glenn Ligon contemporary artwork
Glenn LigonCorrespondence, 2019Aquatint, drypoint on Hahnemuhle copperplate bright white paper
Thomas Dane Gallery
Narratives by Glenn Ligon contemporary artwork
Glenn LigonNarratives, 1993Nine etchings on chine collé with BFK Rives supports, framed
55.5 x 40 cm
Thomas Dane Gallery
Black Rage by Glenn Ligon contemporary artwork
Glenn LigonBlack Rage, 2015Silkscreen and digital
27.9 x 21.6 cm
Karsten Schubert Enquire about this work
Notes for a Poem on The Third World (chapter two) by Glenn Ligon contemporary artwork
Glenn LigonNotes for a Poem on The Third World (chapter two), 2018Neon and paint
210.8 x 141 cm
Galerie Chantal Crousel Enquire about this work

Glenn Ligon Recent Exhibitions

View All (5)
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Basel & Paris at Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris
Closed
13–26 June 2020 Group Exhibition Basel & Paris Galerie Chantal CrouselParis
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Beside Itself at Hauser & Wirth, Hong Kong
Closed
30 April–30 June 2020 Group Exhibition Beside Itself Hauser & WirthOnline Only
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibiton, God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin at David Zwirner, New York
Closed
10 January–16 February 2019 Group Exhibiton God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin David Zwirner19th Street, New York

Glenn Ligon Represented By

Hauser & Wirth contemporary art gallery in Hong Kong Hauser & Wirth Hong Kong, Zurich, London, New York, Los Angeles, Somerset, Gstaad, St. Moritz
Thomas Dane Gallery contemporary art gallery in London, United Kingdom Thomas Dane Gallery London, Naples

Glenn Ligon In Ocula Magazine

What Sold for Over $1 Million at Art Basel Online? Ocula News What Sold for Over $1 Million at Art Basel Online? London, 23 June 2020

Prices didn't reach the heights of the physical fair in 2019, but over a dozen works exceeded the million dollar mark.

Fade out copy.
Read More
Hauser & Wirth’s First VR Exhibition Introduces Menorca Space Ocula Insight Hauser & Wirth’s First VR Exhibition Introduces Menorca Space By Sam Gaskin, Menorca

Sam Gaskin reports on Hauser & Wirth's first Virtual Reality exhibition, Beyond Itself, which is presented in a simulacrum of the gallery's forthcoming space in Menorca, Spain.

Fade out copy.
Read More
16th Istanbul Biennial Collapses Culture-Nature Divide Ocula Report 16th Istanbul Biennial Collapses Culture-Nature Divide By Stephanie Bailey, Istanbul

At the opening of the 16th Istanbul Biennial, The Seventh Continent (14 September–10 November 2019), curator Nicolas Bourriaud began his introduction with a clip from Werner Herzog's 1982 movie Fitzcarraldo, the story of a man who moves a steamship up a hill in the process of fulfilling a fantasy to build an opera house in the Amazon jungle....

Fade out copy.
Read More
Glenn Ligon Ocula Conversation Glenn Ligon By Robert Ayers, St. Louis, Missouri

Ligon achieved a particular kind of renown when 'Black Like Me #2' (1992) was selected to hang in Barack and Michelle Obama's private quarters at the White House in 2009.

Fade out copy.
Read More

Glenn Ligon In Related Press

Seven Artists on the Warhol Influence Related Press Seven Artists on the Warhol Influence 1 November 2018, The New York Times

Three decades after Andy Warhol's death, he remains one of America's most provocative artists. His influence on popular culture is so pervasive that each emerging art movement after him has had to grapple with Warhol's focus on surface perfections and his singular celebrity. Despite their complicated feelings, many contemporary artists say they...

Fade out copy.
Read More
Making the Transformative Power of Words Concrete Related Press Making the Transformative Power of Words Concrete 3 July 2018, Hyperallergic

There is something utterly majestic about block letters — even more so at a staggering height of 12 feet. Such is the case of the letters 'IM' in the painting "Invisible Man (after Ralph Ellison)" (2008) by Tim Rollins & K.O.S.

Fade out copy.
Read More
New territory for Glenn Ligon with first solo show in Italy Related Press New territory for Glenn Ligon with first solo show in Italy 1 May 2018, The Art Newspaper

Glenn Ligon, one of the US's most prominent and punchy artists, has taken his art in a new stylistic direction in his first solo show in Italy. The artist—who is best known for his text-based paintings that he began making in the 1980s—says his new silkscreen and ink marker paintings take text 'to a new level of abstraction'. The...

Fade out copy.
Read More

Be among the first to know when new artworks and exhibitions by Glenn Ligon are added to Ocula.

WeChat

Scan the QR Code via WeChat to follow Ocula's official account.

Scan to follow Ocula on WeChat.
;
iCal
GoogleYahooOutlook