Amy Sillman

Amy Sillman

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Amy Sillman is an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 painter living and working in New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...


In a 2007 article in Artforum
Artforum is an international monthly magazine specializing in contemporary art.-Publication:The magazine is published ten times a year, September through May, along with an annual summer issue...

, Linda Norden wrote of Amy Sillman’s “fearless, tenacious pursuit of a painting that might accurately register the discomfort, incoherence, and absurdity that can characterize painterly experience—and experience in general,” and speaks of “her increasingly influential place among younger painters in both New York and Los Angeles, where she regularly shows, and her growing currency even among contingents of European painters.”

Sillman was born in Detroit, Michigan
Detroit, Michigan
Detroit is the major city among the primary cultural, financial, and transportation centers in the Metro Detroit area, a region of 5.2 million people. As the seat of Wayne County, the city of Detroit is the largest city in the U.S. state of Michigan and serves as a major port on the Detroit River...

, and the winding story line of her early years led her to work in a cannery in Alaska and a feminist silkscreen factory in Chicago, and to train at New York University
New York University
New York University is a private, nonsectarian research university based in New York City. NYU's main campus is situated in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan...

 as a Japanese interpreter for the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

. She finally landed at Manhattan’s School of Visual Arts
School of Visual Arts
The School of Visual Arts , is a proprietary art school located in Manhattan, New York City, and is widely considered to be one of the leading art schools in the United States. It was established in 1947 by co-founders Silas H. Rhodes and Burne Hogarth as the Cartoonists and Illustrators School and...

, graduating in 1979. Then she spent more than a decade content, as she has said, with “learning how to make paintings—just working, not showing.” In 1995, the same year she received an MFA from Bard College
Bard College
Bard College, founded in 1860 as "St. Stephen's College", is a small four-year liberal arts college located in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.-Location:...

, she was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts
National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent agency of the United States federal government that offers support and funding for projects exhibiting artistic excellence. It was created by an act of the U.S. Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. Its current...

 fellowship in painting and the Elaine de Kooning Memorial Fellowship in 1995. In 1999 she received fellowships from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation
Pollock-Krasner Foundation
The Pollock-Krasner Foundation was established in 1985 for the purpose of providing financial assistance to individual working artists of established ability. It was established at the bequest of Lee Krasner, who was an American abstract expressionist painter and the widow of fellow painter Jackson...

 and the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and in 2000 was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship
Guggenheim Fellowship
Guggenheim Fellowships are American grants that have been awarded annually since 1925 by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation to those "who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts." Each year, the foundation makes...

. She began showing at the Brent Sikkema Gallery in New York in 2000.

In a 2006 Artforum
Artforum is an international monthly magazine specializing in contemporary art.-Publication:The magazine is published ten times a year, September through May, along with an annual summer issue...

 article, Jan Avgikos wrote that Sillman’s paintings “mine the edges of abstraction, meshing patches of color with bursts of chaotic line and web-like compositional scaffolding.” Embracing a modernist reverence of inspired imagination, Sillman defines honesty as the most enduring quality of painting and speaks of painting as “physical, like an extension of my arm.” In a New York Times review of Sillman’s 2006 exhibition at Sikkema Jenkins & Co., Ken Johnson
Ken Johnson
-Sports personalities:*Ken Johnson , defensive end for the Cincinnati Bengals, played 1970–1977*Ken Johnson , defensive end for the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs...

 wrote, “The paintings are especially gratifying up close, where you can study the richly complicated textures and colors.” In 2007 Sillman completed four etchings at Crown Point Press, and of this experience, she has said, “Everything that is done in my painting was taken apart layer by layer in printmaking. You take one hundred layers apart and figure out which six will work.”

Sillman’s paintings are in many prominent museums, including the permanent collections of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the Art Institute of Chicago
Art Institute of Chicago
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago is one of America's largest accredited independent schools of art and design, located in the Loop in Chicago, Illinois. It is associated with the museum of the same name, and "The Art Institute of Chicago" or "Chicago Art Institute" often refers to either...

, and the Museum of Modern Art
Museum of Modern Art
The Museum of Modern Art is an art museum in Midtown Manhattan in New York City, on 53rd Street, between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. It has been important in developing and collecting modernist art, and is often identified as the most influential museum of modern art in the world...

 and the Whitney Museum of American Art
Whitney Museum of American Art
The Whitney Museum of American Art, often referred to simply as "the Whitney", is an art museum with a focus on 20th- and 21st-century American art. Located at 945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street in New York City, the Whitney's permanent collection contains more than 18,000 works in a wide variety of...

 in New York. And prominent collections including the collection of CJ Follini
CJ Follini
CJ Follini is an American digital media entrepreneur, film producer and real estate investor. A native New Yorker who built his group of companies by investing in alternative real estate types such as: digital film studios; healthcare real estate; student housing; and artist residence clubs as...

 and Renee Ryan. She has exhibited at Galleria Marabini in Bologna, Italy. She is represented by Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York and Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects
Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects
Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects is a contemporary art gallery in Los Angeles and Berlin, founded by Susanne Vielmetter in 2000.The Gallery was established in 2000 and moved to its current location in Culver City in 2010...

, Los Angeles.

Amy Sillman was a Guna S. Mundheim Fellow in the Visual Arts at the American Academy in Berlin
American Academy in Berlin
The American Academy in Berlin is a research and cultural institution in Berlin whose stated mission is to foster a greater understanding and dialogue between the people of the United States and the people of Germany.The American Academy was founded in September 1994 by a group of prominent...

, Germany, during the Spring of 2009. During the fall of 2010, she was a Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study
The Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard is an educational institution in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and one of the semiautonomous components of Harvard University. It is heir to the name and buildings of Radcliffe College, but unlike that historical institution, its focus is directed...

 at Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

. In May 2011, the Montserrat College of Art
Montserrat College of Art
Montserrat College of Art is a four-year residential college specializing in the visual arts, located in Beverly, Massachusetts, 23 miles north of Boston. It is named indirectly after the Slave Ship Montserrat.-Description:...

awarded Amy Sillman an honorary doctoral degree in fine arts.

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