John Baldessari

John Baldessari
John Baldessari
American Conceptual Artist

"Everybody out there that believes in telekenesis raise my hand."
—John Baldessari

JOHN BALDESSARI (June 17, 1931 - January 2, 2020) was a conceptual artist. Synthesizing photomantage, painting, and language, Baldessari's deadpan visual juxtapositions equated images with words and illuminated, confounded, and challenged meaning. He upended commonly held expectations of how images function, often by drawing the viewer's attention to minor details, absences, or the spaces between things.

Baldessari received several honorary doctorates, the most recent from the National University of Ireland, Burren College of Art (2006). He participated in Documenta (1982, 1978); the Venice Biennale (2003, 1997); and seven Whitney Biennial exhibitions, most recently in 2008. His work has been shown in more than 120 solo exhibitions and 300 group exhibitions. A major retrospective appeared at Tate Modern, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 2009-10.

Baldessari was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2007.