Robert Indiana

United States of America, 1928

American artist Robert Indiana is most famous for his iconic LOVE sculptures, which best exemplify his Pop style of bold, simple, iconic images, especially numbers and short words inspired by American suburbia. Through a variety of media, including painting, sculpture and print, Indiana makes cultural and political statements that both celebrate and criticize the American dream alongside more universal themes of existentialism, religion, politics and the human condition. As a pioneer of assemblage art, hard-edge abstraction and pop art, many of his works are timeless relics of 20th century culture, yet his oeuvre has since expanded to greater contemporary significance: in 2002, an aluminum sculpture entitled 1-0 installed in the lobby of Taipei 101; in 2004, he exhibited in New York Peace Paintings created in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks; and in 2008, created an image of the word “HOPE” similar to his iconic LOVE and donated all proceeds from the sale of its reproduction to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

Robert Indiana was born in New Castle, Indiana in 1928. He had studied at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis and then at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute in Utica, New York. In 1953 he received a degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and won a traveling fellowship to Europe. In 1954, he attended Edinburgh University and Edinburgh College of Art in Scotland. Since his first New York solo exhibition at the Stable Gallery in 1962, he has exhibited at over 30 museums and galleries worldwide. The artist is in the permanent collections of numerous museums, including Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the Smithsonian Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C., the Museum Ludwig in Vienna, Austria, and the Shanghai Art Museum in China.

Image: Photo by Charles Rotmil