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Polly Apfelbaum

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Nationality  American
Name  Polly Apfelbaum
Role  Artist

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Born  1955 (age 59–60)Abington, Pennsylvania
Education  Tyler School of Art (1978)
Books  Polly Apfelbaum: What Does Love Have to Do with it, Spilled Edge Soft Corners: Polly Apfelbaum ... [et Al.]
Awards  Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts, US & Canada

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Polly Apfelbaum (born Abington, Pennsylvania 1955) is an American contemporary artist.


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Polly apfelbaum


Polly Apfelbaum Polly Apfelbaum Artists D39Amelio Gallery

Apfelbaum has lived and worked in New York City since 1978. That same year, she received her BFA from the Tyler School of Art in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania. She has been showing her work consistently in the United States and internationally since her first one-person show in 1986.

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Apfelbaum came to prominence in the 1990s and is best known for what the artist refers to as her "fallen paintings." These large-scale installations consist of hundreds of hand-cut and hand-dyed pieces of velvet fabric that are arranged on the floor. These installations exist as a hybrid between painting and sculpture and occupy an ambiguous space between the two genres. Lane Relyea states "Apfelbaum's work is both painting and sculpture, and perhaps photography and fashion and formless material process as well."

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In 2003, a major mid-career survey show of Apfelbaum's work opened at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia. The show traveled through 2004 to the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, OH, and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas City, MO. In conjunction with the exhibition, a catalogue surveying 15 years of the artist's work was published by the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.

Historic exhibitions

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Polly Apfelbaum has held a number of historic solo exhibitions including The Night, San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco; Reckless, Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma; Helsinki, Finland; Skin and Bones, Bowdoin College, Brunswick, ME; What Does Love Have to Do With It, Massachusetts College of Art, Boston; Today I Love Everybody, Triple Candie, New York; and Crazy Love, Love Crazy, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, MO.

Apfelbaum's work has also been featured in a number of notable museum exhibitions including Sense and Sensibility: Women and Minimalism in the 90s, Comic Abstraction and Lines, Grids, Stains and Words, all at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Painting-The Extended Field, Magasin 3, Stockholm, Sweden; Postmark: An Abstract Effect, Site Santa Fe, NM; Operativo, Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City, Mexico; Sculpture as Field, Kunstverein Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany; The Eye of the Beholder, Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee, Scotland; As Painting: Division and Displacement, Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH; Flowers Observed, Flowers Transformed at The Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, PA; and Extreme Abstraction, at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

She was featured in several biennale’s including Lodz Biennale, Lodz, Poland; Painting Outside Painting, 44th Corcoran Painting Biennial at the Corcoran Museum of Art in Washington D.C.; Other, 4th Biennale D'art Contemporain de Lyon, France; Everyday, 11th Biennale of Sydney, Australia; and Bienal de Valencia, Valencia, Spain.


Polly Apfelbaum was a 2012-2013 recipient of the Joseph H. Hazen Rome Prize, a prize which is awarded to a select group of individuals who represent the highest standard of excellence in the arts and humanities. She has also been a recipient of an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Joan Mitchell Grant, a Richard Diebenkorn Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Artist’s Fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant.

Public collections

Polly Apfelbaum's work is in a number of museum collections including:

  • Armand Hammer Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA
  • Austin Museum of Art, Austin, TX
  • Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, ME
  • Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn
  • Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University, Stanford, CA
  • Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas
  • Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA
  • FRAC Nord-Pas de Calais, Dunkerque, France
  • Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY
  • Henry Art Gallery, Seattle
  • Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel
  • Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO
  • Magasin 3, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Miami Art Museum, Miami
  • Musee d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris
  • Museum of Modern Art, New York
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
  • National Academy Museum, New York
  • New Mexico Museum of Art, Santa Fe, NM
  • Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia
  • Princeton Museum, Princeton, NJ
  • RISD Museum of Art, Providence, RI
  • Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KY
  • Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
  • Worcester Art Museum, Worcester, MA
  • Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT
  • References

    Polly Apfelbaum Wikipedia

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