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Joel Shapiro, 2014 Photo: Yves Bresson
Joel Shapiro, 2014 Photo: Yves Bresson

Joel Shapiro’s sculptures hover at the border between the abstract and the figurative. Some of his works, assembled from intertwined boards and lopsided planes in irregular distances and angles, seem accidental. The majority of his constructions, built from oblong rectangular blocks of wood or bronze, raise associations with human figures: some of them stand on one leg, others on two, others lie on the floor, some seem to climb the walls. Some of the figures seem to exist in a state of precarious balance between floating and falling. The cubes can be read as limbs, torsos and heads and, at the expense of sculptural unity, they preserve their autonomy as individual parts vis-à-vis the whole. The simple geometry and the massiveness of the heavy blocks contrast with the seeming instability of the abstract constructions and the body parts themselves – everything seems as though it were about to move.

Joel Shapiro, born in 1941 in New York City, graduated from New York University in 1964 (B.A) and in 1969 (M.A). His work has been the subject of nearly 150 national and international solo exhibitions and retrospectives, and is currently being exhibited at the Museum Ludwig in Cologne. Many of his sculptures are located in public spaces in major Asian, European and North American cities, and his work can be found in public collections in the United States and abroad, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Joel Shapiro has received numerous awards. Joel Shapiro lives and works in New York City.

Exhibitions

Publications

Exhibitions

Solo exhibitions
2019
Joel Shapiro: Plaster Sculptures 1971–2014, Part II

Craig F. Starr Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2019-20
Joel Shapiro. New Sculpture

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2019
Joel Shapiro: Plaster Sculptures 1971–2014, Part I

Craig F. Starr Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2018
Joel Shapiro: The Bronzes

Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, Madison, WI, USA

2018
Joel Shapiro

Kasmin Sculpture Garden, New York, NY, USA

2018
Joel Shapiro: Plaster, Paper, Wood and Wire

Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT, USA

2018
Joel Shapiro

Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2018
Joel Shapiro. Splay

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2017
Joel Shapiro

Pace London, London, UK

2017
Joel Shapiro: Frühe und neue Skulpturen

Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Winterthur, Switzerland

2016
Joel Shapiro

Dominique Lévy, New York, NY, USA

2016
Joel Shapiro

Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, TX, USA

2015
Joel Shapiro. Wood Plaster Bronze

Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2014
Joel Shapiro. Iron and Bronze 1973 - 76

Craig F. Starr Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2014
Joel Shapiro

Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR, USA

2014
Joel Shapiro: Works on Paper 2011 – 2013

Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2014
Joel Shapiro

Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, USA

2014
The New York Moment

Musée d’Art Moderne Saint-Etienne Métropole, Saint-Priest-en-Jarez, France

2013
Joel Shapiro

Louver Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, USA

2012
Joel Shapiro: New Installation

Rice Gallery, Houston, TX, USA

2012
New Sculptures and Drawings

Texas Gallery, Houston, TX, USA

2011
Joel Shapiro: Five Recent Sculptures

L.A. Louver (South gallery), Venice, CA, USA

2011
Joel Shapiro: New Works

Galerie Forsblom, Helsinki, Finland

2011
Joel Shapiro

Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany

Group exhibitions
2020
Identities

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

Learn more
2020
Field of Dreams

The Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, NY, USA

2019
1967-1980: Explorations

Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2019
Levity/Density

Kasmin Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2018
Polarities

TOTAH Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2018
Suspension – A History of Abstract Hanging Sculpture 1918-2018

Olivier Malingue, London, UK

2018
Sol LeWitt/Joel Shapiro/Dan Walsh

Patrick De Brock Gallery, Knokke, Belgium

2017
Multiple Impressions

Talley Dunn Gallery, Dallas, TX, USA

2017
Spring Show

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2017
Autumn Show

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2017
Sculpture Milwaukee

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

2016
in the making

Luxembourg & Dayan, New York, NY, USA

2016
Summer Show

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2016
FORTY

MoMA PS1, Long Island City, Queens, NY, USA

2016
Modernist Intersections: The TIA Collection

The University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ, USA

2015
Accrochage

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2015-16
Accrochage

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2015
Beyond Horizon. Reflexion on the horizontal line

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2014
Accrochage

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2014
Cross-Cuts: Joel Shapiro and Richard Nonas

Clocktower/Knockdown Center, Maspeth, NY, USA

2014
A Brief History of Pace

Pace, Menlo Park, CA, USA

2014
Grounded

Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2014
Foundation for Art ad Preservation in Embassies (FARE) Exhibition

Guild Hall, New York, NY, USA

2014
Art on Color

Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl, New York, NY, USA

2013
Image and Abstraction

Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2013
Winter Group Show

Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2013
Kiasma Hits: Kiasma Collections

Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland

2013
Come Together: Surviving Sandy, Year 1

Industry City, New York, NY, USA

2013
Répétition: 1960–1975

Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2013
Drawing Line into Form: Works on Paper by Sculptors from the Collection of BNY Mellon

Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA, USA

2012
Carte Blanche à Paula Cooper Gallery

Galerie Patrick Seguin, Paris, France

2012
Post War American Art

David Klein Gallery, Birmingham, UK

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