Mind/Mirror · Major Jasper Johns Retrospective

ART & the Art World (theartwolf)
3 min readSep 29, 2021
Mind/Mirror · Major Jasper Johns Retrospective

Mind/Mirror · Major Jasper Johns Retrospective

From 29 September 2021 to 13 February 2022, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art present the most comprehensive retrospective to date of the work of Jasper Johns.

Jasper Johns — Flag 1954–55 — MoMAJasper Johns — False Start — 1959

Source: Philadelphia Museum of Art. Images: “Flag,” 1954–55, by Jasper Johns. Encaustic, oil and collage on canvas mounted on wood (3 panels), 41.25 X 60.75 in. (104.8 x 154.3 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; gift of Philip Johnson in honor of Alfred H. Barr, Jr. © 2021 Jasper Johns/GAVA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York — “False Start”, 1959, by Jasper Johns. Oil on canvas, 67 1/2 × 53 1/8 in. (171.5 × 134.9 cm). Private collection. Jasper Johns / Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, NY.

Jasper Johns is undoubtedly one of the most important living artists. At 91, Johns is the last surviving member of the great post-war generation of American artists, and his work, based on Abstract Expressionism, was essential to the creation of Pop Art in the 1960s. As proof of his importance, a painting by Johns fetched the highest price for a work of art by a living artist in 2010, selling for $110 million in a private sale. The presentation of the most important retrospective to date of the artist’s work promises to be one of the major artistic events of the year.

“Jasper Johns: Mind/Mirror” includes -between the two venues- some 500 works by the artist. The installation at the Whitney Museum is based on the 216 works by Johns in the museum’s own collections, but also includes important loans from public and private collections. Included, of course, is “Three Flags” from 1958 -one of the icons of the museum’s collection- which is shown alongside “White Flag”, 1955 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York); “Flag on Orange Field”, 1957 (Museum Ludwig, Cologne), and “Flags”, 1965 (the artist’s collection, on long-term loan to the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis).

Another 250 or so works are on view at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, including sixty works from the artist’s collection, many of which have never been shown to the public. The star piece of the exhibition is “Flag”, 1954–55, from the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the first “flag” painted by Johns, which the museum describes as “an undisputable masterpiece of contemporary art and among the most influential images ever produced by an American artist”. In addition to this “Flag”, the Philadelphia Museum also includes a gallery devoted to Johns’ “number” paintings, including a set of four large paintings on the theme of “0 to 9”, produced between 1960 and 1961.

As is customary for these major retrospectives, a large exhibition catalogue has been created, containing more than 300 pages and 600 illustrations. #2021 #JasperJohns #PhiladelphiaMuseumofArt #theartwolf

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ART & the Art World (theartwolf)

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