Born 1955, Detroit, Michigan
Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York
In 2009 Amy Sillman wrote a seriously funny breakup letter. She wasn’t breaking up with a person; she was breaking up with abstraction. “I’m friends with all of A’s friends and stuff, and I think A’s really cool and I totally learned a LOT from A – but you know what? I don’t want to say anything bad about A, but I have to TOTALLY MOVE ON with my LIFE. I started to really feel like A’s been holding me back and even like kind of manipulative.” Amy Sillman’s career has been a fascinating series of shifts towards and away from abstraction. It is a perpetual pull. But like all absolute claims, her breakup with abstraction didn’t hold. At the same time, consideration of Sillman’s paintings cannot ignore the presence of the figure. It was always already there, beneath the layers of paint and the reconsiderations of composition. She paints in that space and we as viewers can imagine the forms to be representations or something completely different.
Sillman received her BFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York and her MFA from Bard College in 1995. Her work has been widely exhibited and is included in numerous public collections, including The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, The Art Institute of Chicago, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. A large-scale survey of Sillman’s work recently opened at ICA Boston, traveled to the Aspen Art Museum, and will be on view at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY in summer 2014