Nauman is regarded as one of the most innovative artists of his generation and as a catalyst for the recent shift in international artistic practice toward conceptual and performative uses of language and the body.
Born in Fort Wayne, Indiana in 1941, Bruce Nauman received his BS from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1964, and his MFA from the University of California, Davis, in 1966.
Since his first solo gallery show in 1966, Nauman has been the subject of many notable museum exhibitions. His first survey was organised by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (1972) and the Whitney Museum of American Art (1973). In 1986–1987, Whitechapel Gallery organised a solo show in conjunction with Kunsthalle Basel, which travelled to Musée d‘Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. A major retrospective, co-organised by The Walker Art Centre and the Hirshhorn Museum, opened in Minneapolis (1994), and travelled to the Hirshhorn; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; and Kunsthaus Zurich (1993-1995). More recent solo exhibitions include Tate Modern Turbine Hall’s commission, London (2004) and A Rose Has No Teeth: Bruce Nauman in the 1960s at the Berkeley Art Museum, Castello di Rivoli, and Menil Collection (2007-2008). The Fondation Cartier presented a solo exhibition from 12 March to 21 June 2015, including recent video and sound sculptures.
Nauman received the Wolf Foundation Prize in Arts in 1993, the Wexner Prize in 1994, the Golden Lion at the 48th Venice Biennale in 1999, and the Praemium Imperiale for Visual Arts in 2004 in Japan. Nauman represented the United States at the 2009 Venice Biennale, and this exhibition was awarded the Golden Lion for Best National Participation. Nauman was the 2014 laureate of the Austrian Frederick Kiesler Prize for Architecture and the Arts, Vienna. He had his first solo exhibition at Sperone Westwater in 1976, where he exhibits regularly.
Born: 1941 in Fort Waye, Indiana, United States
Elected Hon RA: 24 May 2001
Preferred media: Sculpture, Photography, Video art, Drawing, Printmaking, and Performance