Name Sherrie Levine
|Born April 17, 1947 (age 68) (1947-04-17) Hazleton, Pennsylvania|
Education University of Wisconsin-Madison
Artwork La Fortune (After Man Ray: 1), Black Newborn
Known for Photographer, Appropriation
Sherrie levine untitled after edward weston
Sherrie Levine (born in 1947 in Hazleton, Pennsylvania) is an American photographer, painter, and conceptual artist. She is best known for her reproductions of significant male artists' works through the medium of photography, so as to discuss notions of authenticity and originality.
- Sherrie levine untitled after edward weston
- Sherrie Levine
- Solo exhibitions
- Group exhibitions
- Public collections
In particular, Levine's reproductions focus upon idolized male artists in order to critique limiting ideas of 'Artist Genius' in which Art History has traditionally undervalued the role of female artists.
Sherrie Levine received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin in Madison in 1969. In 1973, she earned her M.F.A. from the same institution.
Much of Levine's work is explicitly appropriated from recognizable modernist artworks by artists such as Walker Evans, Edgar Degas, and Constantin Brancusi. Appropriation art became popular in the late 1970s, although it can be traced to early modernist works, specifically those using collage. Other appropriation artists such as Louise Lawler, Vikky Alexander, Barbara Kruger, and Mike Bidlo came into prominence in New York’s East Village in the 1980s. The importance of appropriation art in contemporary culture lies in its ability to fuse broad cultural images as a whole and direct them towards narrower contexts of interpretation.
In 1977, Levine participated in the exhibition Pictures at Artists Space in New York, curated by Douglas Crimp. Other artists in the exhibition included Robert Longo, Troy Brauntuch, Jack Goldstein, and Philip Smith. Crimp's term, "Pictures Generation," was later used to describe the generation of artists in the late 1970s and early 1980s who were moving away from minimalism and towards picture-making.
Levine is best known for her series of photographs, After Walker Evans, which was shown at her 1981 solo exhibition at Metro Pictures Gallery in New York. The works consist of well-known Walker Evans photographs, rephotographed by Levine from an Evans exhibition catalogue and then presented as Levine's own artwork without manipulation of the images. The Evans photographs—made famous by his book project Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, with writings by James Agee—are widely considered to be the quintessential photographic record of rural American poor during the Great Depression. The Estate of Walker Evans saw the series as a copyright infringement, and acquired Levine's works to prohibit their sale. Levine later donated the whole series to the estate. All of it is now owned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Levine's appropriation of Evans's images has since become a hallmark of the postmodern movement.
Levine has rephotographed a number of works by other artists, including Eliot Porter and Edward Weston. Additional examples of Levine's works include photographs of Van Gogh paintings from a book of his work; watercolor paintings based directly on work by Fernand Léger; pieces of plywood with their knotholes painted bright solid colors; and her 1991 sculpture Fountain, a bronze urinal modeled after Marcel Duchamp's 1917 work, Fountain.
In 1993, Levine created cast glass copies of sculptures by Constantin Brancusi, held in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, for an exhibition titled Museum Studies. In 2009, the Metropolitan Museum of Art held an exhibition titled The Pictures Generation, which featured Levine's works. In November 2011, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York mounted a survey exhibition of Levine's career titled Mayhem. Sherrie Levine: Mayhem, mounted at the Whitney Museum of Art from November 2011 through January 2012, was a meticulously organized installation, ranging from Levine's best-known photographs to works including her more recent Crystal Skull series (2010). During the winter of 2016, Levine exhibited new work of monochrome paintings paired with refrigerators at David Zwirner Gallery. This was her first show with the Zwirner Gallery after being represented for seventeen years by the Paula Cooper Gallery.
Levine showed with Baskerville & Watson Gallery, New York, in the early 1980s and worked with Mary Boone Gallery in New York between 1987 and 2015. She is currently represented by David Zwirner in New York, Simon Lee Gallery in London, and Jablonka Galerie in Cologne.
Levine's works can be seen in a number of public institutions, including: