Joan Jonas '65 to Represent United States at 2015 Venice Biennale

April 18, 2015

Joan Jonas '65 was selected by the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, which promotes cultural exchanges worldwide, to represent the United States at the 56th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, which runs from May 9 through November 22, 2015. For the American pavilion, Jonas will create a site-specific installation incorporating video, drawings, objects and sound.

Jonas is widely considered one of the most important and influential video and performance artists of 60s and 70s. In 1994, Jonas was honored with a major retrospective at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam in which she transformed several of her performance works intoinstallations for the museum. In 2003 she had solo exhibitions at Rosamund Felsen Gallery in Los Angeles and the Pat Hearn Gallery in New York City. The Queens Museum of Art exhibited Joan Jonas: Five Works from December 2003 through March 2004. It was the first major exhibition of Jonas’s work in a New York museum. The exhibition included a video room as well as a survey of drawings, photographs and sketchbooks. Jonas has been awarded fellowships and grants for choreography, video and visual arts from the National Endowment for the Arts, Rockefeller Foundation and the Contemporary Art Television Fund. She has received the Hyogo Prefecture Museum of Modern Art Prize at the Tokyo International Video Art Festival, the Polaroid Award for Video, and the American Film Institute Maya Deren Award for Video. In 2012, Jonas was honored on the occasion of the Kitchen Spring Gala Benefit.

Joan Jonas is Professor Emerita at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she began teaching in 1998. The US Pavilion is curated by Ute Meta Bauer, a former colleague of Jonas’ at MIT who is currently the director of the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, and Paul C. Ha, Director of the MIT List Visual Arts Center who also serves as commissioner for the project.