Michelle Stuart (b. 1933, Los Angeles, California) lives and works in New York, Amagansett and Carpinteria, California. Since the 1970s, Stuart has been internationally recognized for pioneering works that synthesize Land Art, drawing, and sculpture. Stuart’s original approach to material and process has seen her create large-scale site-specific works in the landscape, sculptural installations incorporating objects, drawings, and audio-visual elements, as well as photographs, drawings and sculptures that bring the material of landscape – earth and rock – into the gallery. Photography, which has been present in her work both literally and conceptually since that time, has been her primary medium since 2009. In her recent work, Stuart uses the vast archive of analog and digital photographs that she has taken and collected for almost half a century, activating their aesthetic potential by re-contextualizing them in groups, and often altering them to weave personal stories. These dreamlike recollections of her past not only continue her life-long artistic engagement with specific locations but affirm the significance of place as a unique source of memory.
Important exhibitions include: On Line: Drawing Through the Twentieth Century at The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2010); Ends of the Earth: Land Art to 1974 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and Haus der Kunst, Munich (2012); Alice in Wonderland at Tate Liverpool, UK (2012); and FORTY at MoMA P.S. 1 (2016). Recent important travelling exhibitions include Virginia Woolf: an exhibition inspired by her writings, touring from Tate St. Ives, UK to Pallant House Gallery Chichester, UK and Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, UK (2018); Michelle Stuart: Drawn From Nature touring from Djanogly Art Gallery, Lakeside Arts Centre, Nottingham, UK to the Parrish Art Museum, Watermill, NY, and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, CA (2013–2014); and Apparitions: Frottages and Rubbings from 1860 to Now, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA and the Menil Collection, Houston, TX (2015–2016). Stuart was also included in the exhibition Revolution in the Making: Abstract Sculpture by Women, 1947–2016 at Hauser Wirth & Schimmel, Los Angeles, CA (2016). Stuart participated in documenta 6, Kassel and most recently in the 57th Venice Biennale, curated by Christine Macel.
Stuart’s work is in major international museum collections, including Dia Art Foundation, The Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art and Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Santa Barbara Museum of Art; Art Institute of Chicago; the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; Haags Gemeentemuseum, Netherlands; Kunstmuseen, Krefeld, Germany; Musee d’Art de Toulon, France; the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; and Tate Modern, London.