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b. 1951, USA

James Welling Biography

James Welling has been questioning the norms of representation since the 1970s. His work centers on an exploration of photography, shuffling the elemental components of the medium to produce a distinctly uncompromising body of work. Welling is also intensely interested in cultural and personal ideas of memory in his work. In opening up the medium of photography for experimentation, James Welling’s practice has influenced an entire generation of artists and photographers.

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Welling was born in 1951 in Hartford, Connecticut. He received his B.F.A. and M.F.A. from the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California.

He lives and works in Los Angeles.

Source: David Zwirner

Welling is currently on view at The Art Institute of Chicago is the museum's recent acquisition of Welling's important early body of work entitled Diary of Elizabeth and James Dixon, 1840-41 / Connecticut Landscapes, 1977-86(through April 12, 2015).

In 2013, a major survey, James Welling: Monograph, was organized by the Cincinnati Art Museum in Ohio and accompanied by a large-scale catalogue published by Aperture. The exhibition traveled to the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. Also shown in 2013 was James Welling: Autograph, a comprehensive overview presented at the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Switzerland. In 2012, James Welling: The Mind on Fire opened at the MK Gallery in Milton Keynes, England, which explored the origin and development of Welling’s abstract photographs from the 1980s. The show traveled to the Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea in Santiago de Compostela, Spain and the Contemporary Art Gallery in Vancouver.

Welling’s work has been exhibited widely in the United States and internationally, including solo exhibitions at the University Museum of Contemporary Art, UMASS Amherst, Amherst, Massachusetts (2013); Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, Connecticut (2012); Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minnesota (2010); Horticultural Society of New York (2007); Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels; Art Gallery of York University, Toronto (both 2002); Sprengel Museum Hannover (1999); Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; and the Kunstmuseum Luzern, Lucerne, Switzerland (both 1998). In 2000, the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio organized a major survey of his work, which traveled to the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and the Baltimore Museum of Art.

In 2009, Welling’s work was featured in the critically acclaimed historical survey, The Pictures Generation, 1974-1984, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, and in 2008, he participated in the Whitney Biennial. In 1992, his work was included in documenta IX.

In 2014, Welling was named one of the recipients of the prestigious Infinity Award given by the International Center of Photography, New York. He has held various teaching positions at prominent universities since 1995. He is currently Area Head of Photography at UCLA. He is currently a Visiting Professor of Photography at Princeton University, where he previously held the position in 2012. 

Work by the artist is held in major museum collections, including the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Germany; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

Source: David Zwirner

Exhibition view: James Welling, Metamorphosis, David Zwirner, Hong Kong (1 April–8 May 2021). Courtesy David Zwirner.

James Welling Featured Artworks

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4776 by James Welling contemporary artwork
James Welling4776, 2015Inkjet print
106.7 x 160 cm
David Zwirner Contact Gallery
#1 by James Welling contemporary artwork
James Welling#1, 2016Digital c-print on Kodak Endura-Gloss paper
47 x 38 inches
Marian Goodman Gallery Contact Gallery
9472 by James Welling contemporary artwork
James Welling9472, 2015Inkjet print on rag paper
106.7 x 160 cm
David Zwirner Contact Gallery
9812 by James Welling contemporary artwork
James Welling9812, 2016Inkjet print on rag paper
106.7 x 160 cm
David Zwirner Contact Gallery
Sculpture of a Man by James Welling contemporary artwork
James WellingSculpture of a Man, 2019UV-curable ink on Dibond aluminium
50 1/2 x 33 5/8 inches
Perrotin Contact Gallery
3824 by James Welling contemporary artwork
James Welling3824, 2018UV-curable ink on Dibond aluminium
50 1/2 x 33 5/8 inches
Perrotin Contact Gallery
Julia Mamaea by James Welling contemporary artwork
James WellingJulia Mamaea, 2018Gelatin dichromate print with aniline dye
35.6 x 27.9 cm
Marian Goodman Gallery Contact Gallery
Portrait of Avidia Plautia by James Welling contemporary artwork
James WellingPortrait of Avidia Plautia, 2019Framed oil pigment and electrostatic print on polyester
45.7 x 30.5 cm
Maureen Paley

James Welling Current & Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, James Welling, Metamorphosis at David Zwirner, Hong Kong
Closing Soon
1 April–8 May 2021 James Welling Metamorphosis David ZwirnerHong Kong
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Lìxià at David Zwirner, Hong Kong
Closed
5 May–5 June 2020 Group Exhibition Lìxià David ZwirnerHong Kong
Contemporary art exhibition, James Welling, James Welling: Pathological Color Viewing Room at David Zwirner, Online Only, New York
Closed
24 February–8 March 2020 James Welling James Welling: Pathological Color Viewing Room David ZwirnerOnline Only

James Welling Represented By

David Zwirner contemporary art gallery in 19th Street, New York, USA David Zwirner New York, London, Paris, Hong Kong
Marian Goodman Gallery contemporary art gallery in New York, USA Marian Goodman Gallery New York, Paris, London
Maureen Paley contemporary art gallery in London, United Kingdom Maureen Paley London, Hove

James Welling In Ocula Magazine

Mega Galleries Hasten to Launch AR and VR Technologies Ocula News Mega Galleries Hasten to Launch AR and VR Technologies Milan, 15 April 2020

Massimo De Carlo, Hauser & Wirth, and Lisson Gallery are all promoting XR projects this month.

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ADAA The Art Show 2020 Ocula Photolog ADAA The Art Show 2020

Members of The Art Dealers Association of America (ADAA) joined forces for The Art Show at the end of February (27 February–1 March 2020). The 2020 iteration saw more than half of its presentations dedicated to a single artist and 19 exhibitions focused on female artists, in addition to vibrant thematic and group surveys.

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James Welling In Video & Audio

Galerie nächst St. Stephan | James Welling on his exhibition - Metamorph Related Video & Audio Galerie nächst St. Stephan | James Welling on his exhibition - Metamorph 14 June 2018, Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder

JAMES WELLING: Metamorph (LOGIN) 10 May–17 June, 2017 Internationally, James Welling is one of the most keenly experimental photographers who has created a most diverse series of works. Fascinated by aesthetic, conceptual and material challenges of the medium he works with black and white photography, photograms, colour photography, handmade...

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