The wide-ranging work of artist Jannis Kounellis (Greece, 1936–2017) is the subject of this major Walker-organized exhibition, the first survey to be presented in the United States in more than 35 years. Kounellis played a central role in the Italian Arte Povera movement of the 1960s and early 1970s, and has had a broad influence on subsequent generations of artists over five decades. The exhibition, which includes some 80 works, offers the most comprehensive assessment of his career to date. Assembled with the full cooperation with the artist’s estate and featuring a host of international loans, the exhibition revisits Kounellis’s innovative practice through key stages of his career, examining both iconic works and pieces rarely or never-before seen.
The exhibition presents a broad range of examples, including paintings, works on paper, sculptures, installations, and hybrid works combining objects with live performance. Within this range, the artist considered all of his works to be seen as an expansive and deep analysis of painting as a medium. “Everything I do is painting, even if I don’t touch a brush,” Kounellis said. “I tell my truth as a painter.”
The show will be accompanied by a lushly illustrated, major publication, including contributions by a new generation of scholars, produced by the Walker’s award-winning design studio.
Vincenzo de Bellis, curator and associate director of programs, Visual Arts.