Jasper Johns: The Whitney

Art Review — NewYorkArtWorld ®

Jasper Johns was born in Augusta, Georgia, in 1930. He first came to New York in 1949 after attending the University of South Carolina at Columbia. Following miliary service at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and in Sendai, Japan, he returned to New York where he supported himself by working in a bookstore and by designing commercial displays.


The well known paintings of flags, targets and numbers were begun in 1954-55, and shown in Johns' first one-man exhibition at the Leo Castelli Gallery in 1958. The following year, Johns was included in the Sixteen Americans exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, and has since been represented in international exhibitions throughout the world.

Retrospective exhibitions of his work were held at Columbia Museum of Art, South Carolina. In 1960, at the Jewish Museum, New York, and the Whitechapel Gallery, London, in 1964; and at the Pasadena Art Museum, Calfornia, in 1965.

Large exhibitions of drawings by Johns were organized in 1966 by the Smithsonian Institution's National Collection of Fine Arts, Washington, D.C., and in 1974-75 by the Arts Council of Great Britain. In 1970 both the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York held major print retrospectives.

Jasper Johns

Photo by Judy Tomkins

" I think that one wants from a painting a sense of life. The final suggestion, the final statement, has to be not a deliberate statement but a helpless statement. It has to be what you can't avoid saying."

- Jasper Johns

Art Review — NewYorkArtWorld.com

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