Roger Ballen

1950 · United States

Artist biography

Roger Ballen is seen as an established contemporary artist, who was born in the United States. Roger Ballen was born in 1950. Some of the artist's contemporarie that are from the same generation and country include Chuck Close, Dale Chihuly, Bruce Nauman, James Turrell and Barbara Kruger.

About Roger Ballen's works

Roger Ballen is known for working in the fields of Conceptual and Figuration work. Emerging as an art movement in the 1960s, Conceptualism has sparked a significant amount of controversy and debate, usually provoking intense reactions in its viewership. Conceptual art by essence implies that the idea behind the actual artwork is more important than the finished product itself. The research and strategies conducted by the artist represent the most important part of the work, conceptual art thus aims to be an art of the mind, instead of appealing to the senses. Although it refers to art from the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s, the origins of Conceptualism can be traced back to 1917, with Marcel Duchamp and his controversial artwork Fontaine, which tried to obliterate the boundaries between art and reality. Conceptual art is not as straightforward as other movements, as it uses an interdisciplinary approach, and the productions can take the form of anything - from everyday objects to performances requiring audience participation.

Figurative art has been around since the earliest stages of visual arts, and includes any form of modern art which references the reality or the human figure, in opposition to Abstraction. Figurative art embraces a significant amount of styles, thus remaining a truly innovative and radical category in which artists created critically acclaimed masterpieces, such as Pablo Picasso’s painting Les Demoiselles D’Avignon, or Paul Cézanne’s The Bathers.

Galleries and Exhibitions

Roger Ballen's work is on display in several galleries around the world, in countries like France, Denmark, and Italy. The galleries exhibiting Roger Ballen's work include Hamiltons Gallery in the United Kingdom, Galleri Tom Christoffersen in Denmark, as well as Galerie Karsten Greve | Paris in France. Roger Ballen's work has most recently been displayed during the exhibition Group Exhibition at Galerie Felix Frachon in Ixelles, Belgium. The exhibition was open from 23 November 2019 until 20 December 2019. Roger Ballen's other most recent exhibitions listed on Artland include the exhibitions; Solo Exhibition (07 September 2019 - 18 October 2019) at Stieglitz 19 in Antwerp and Status (21 November 2019 - 20 December 2019) at Galleri Tom Christoffersen in Copenhagen. Roger Ballen's first listed exhibition in Artland's database was called Introspective and took place at Camara Oscura in Madrid, Spain from the 25 May 2017 to 29 July 2017.

Roger Ballen in private collections

The following Collections on Artland feature some of Roger Ballen's works: Michael Perch which also includes works by other renowned artists Bent Rej, Edward Burtynsky and Roger Ballen; and Chappacua with works from prominent artists Gosha Rubchinskiy, Ottar Karlsen and Marc Kiska.

Historical Context of United States

The United States has been key in the development of modern and contemporary art in the twentieth century, especially in the post war era, when the cultural importance of New York asserted its influence over Paris, formerly considered as the most important art hub globally. Leading art movements established and cultivated in significant ways throughout the United States include Abstract Expressionism in various forms, Pop Art, including its West and East Coast branches, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Neo-Expressionism, Graffiti and Street Art, plus a multitude of post-modern echoes of these many types. In the modern and contemporary period, the United States has cultivated a prevailing influence over the visual culture of the World, due to the dominion of its economic and political institutions. Key examples of world renowned U.S artists of the modern and contemporary era include Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Frank Stella, Donald Judd, Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, Julian Schnabel, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring.

Further Biographical Context for Roger Ballen

Roger Ballen was born in 1950 was primarily influenced by the distinctive cultural milieu of 1970s. Conceptualism is often perceived as a response to Minimalism, and the leading art movement of the 1970s, challenging the boundaries of art with its revolutionary features. The movements that succeeded were all representative of a strong desire to evolve and consolidate the art world, in response to the tensions of the previous 1960s. Process art branched out from Conceptualism, featuring some of its most crucial aspects, but going further in creating mysterious and experimental artistic journeys, while Land Art brought creation to the outsides, initiating early philosophies of environmentalism. In Germany, Expressive figure painting was given a second chance for the first time since the decline of Abstract Expressionism almost twenty years ago, the genre regained its distinction through the brushstrokes of Gerhard Richter, Anselm Kiefer and Georg Baselitz. The multicultural and sophisticated position that New York city held in the 1960s remained just as influential in the 1970s. With multiple international renowned artists gravitating the galleries and downtown scene, the city once again strengthened its reputation as the artistic hub of the era. The Arte Povera movement, which emerged in Italy, received international acknowledgement in the 1970s, and leading figures such as Jannis Kounnelis, Mario Merz, and Michelangelo Pistoletto were praised.

Roger Ballen

  • Artworks in Collections 5
  • Exhibitions 9
  • Related Artists

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