John Baldessari


John Baldessari (b. 1931-2020, California) is a conceptual artist known for his pioneering use of appropriated imagery. By blending photography, painting and text, Baldessari’s work examines the plastic nature of artistic media while offering commentary on our contemporary culture. Through a diverse practice that includes paintings, sculpture and installations, the artist shaped the Conceptual Art landscape alongside Joseph Kosuth and Hans Haacke, garnering early acclaim for his signature use of colorful dots atop photographic images. 


Baldessari received his BA and MA from San Diego State College, and engaged in post-graduate studies at the Chouinard Art Institute and the University of California Los Angeles. He was the recipient of several honorary doctorates and awards, including the National Medal of Arts in 2014. His work was featured in Documenta (1982, 1978); the Venice Biennale (2003, 1997); and seven Whitney Biennial exhibitions. Having exhibited in more than 120 solo and 300 group exhibition, his compositions can be found in countless institutions, including the Tate (London), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Smithsonian American Art Museum (DC).

Related Works

  • In our sister gallery, form & concept, fiber artist Jodi Colella similarly appropriates vintage tintypes, photographs, and postcards in order to reclaim them as canvases for her hand-stitched scenes. View her work.

  • For more vibrant photographic prints of cities and landscapes, see the collected works of conceptual artist and world-traveler Tony Soulie. View his work.