Mark Borghi Fine Art

Elaine Sturtevant


Elaine Sturtevant (1924-2014) was born in Ohio and made the first years of her artists life working in New York where she began in 1965 to manually reproduce paintings and objects created by her contemporaries with results that can immediately be identified with an original – closely enough to intrigue the viewer and raise the fundamental question, what am I looking at?  Reflection, thinking, and analysis is the core of her work, from the paintings of the late 1960’s to the most recent videos and installations.  There is a famous Sturtevant maxim that runs,  “negative definition is a very powerful philosophical position.” During the era of Pop-art Sturtevant made her version of Warhol’s flowers, John’s Flags, Stella’s black and grey paintings and developed this discourse a decade later after moving to Paris, with works based on Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Beuys and Anselm Kiefer.  In the last two decades Sturtevant has evolved a highly structured and rigorous exploration of current events making multi-screen video works, and installations exposing the simulacrum that is as much an attack on arts media/advertising dimension as the corrupt power structures that surround it. In 2010 Sturtevant had an important exhibition titled The Razzle Dazzle of Thinking at the Musee Moderne de la Ville de Paris. The artist was awarded The Golden Lion award for Lifetime Achievement at the Venice Biennale in 2011. The Moderne Museet, Stockholm will present an exhibition curated by Daniel Birnbaum in March 2012 which will move later in the year to the Kunsthaus Zurich. On May 7, 2014 Elaine Sturtevant passed away in Paris where she worked and lived since the 1990s. Her timeless work and unique contribution to Contemporary Art in connection to other intellectual discourses will forever be reflected in future avant-garde generations.

Selected Works