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Self Portrait (Aqua)
© Michael Craig-Martin. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery. Photo credit: Royal Academy of Arts

Self Portrait (Aqua) 2007

Michael Craig-Martin (b.1941)

Royal Academy of Arts

Michael Craig-Martin. Irish artist, writer, and teacher. He was born in Dublin, moved to the USA as a child, and studied at Yale University, where he encountered an important early influence, John Cage's ‘Lecture on Nothing’ (1949). ‘Life without structure is unseen. Structure without life is dead.’ Although Josef *Albers was no longer there in person, his teaching system remained and Craig-Martin was impressed by the ‘intellectual coherence’ of his view of art (Tusa). In 1966 he settled in England, where he became one of the leading figures in *Conceptual art. His work was less concerned with verbal language than that of some of his contemporaries, more with developing the minimal box forms of *Judd and *Morris by introducing elements of paradox and spectator participation, as with the Box that Never Closes (1967, Swindon Museum and Art Gallery).

Text source: A Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art (Oxford University Press)


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