Robert Indiana 1928-2018


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Robert Indiana is known for his use of commercial words in sculpture, paintings and prints. The artist was originally named Robert Clark, but later adopted Indiana as his last name early in his career. Indiana served three years in the US Air Force before studying at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1949 to 1953.  He briefly lived in Edinburgh and then moved to New York to begin his life as an artist in 1954.


Indiana started experimenting with assemblage in the 1950s, but his attention turned towards single, striking words in the early 1960s. He once stated: "There are more signs than trees in America. There are more signs than leaves. So I think of myself as a painter of American landscape." In 1973, Indiana's work LOVE, which was first made for the MoMA's Christmas card in 1965, was chosen as a widely-distributed stamp by the US Postal Service. One of his edition of three 12' tall Love Red-Blue (1990) sold for $4.1 million at auction in 2011. In addition to art, Indiana is also attuned to politics and social media. He found inspiration for Hope from Barack Obama and raised over $1 million for his campaign. In 2013, the Whitney Museum of American Art organized a retrospective of his work called "Beyond Love," which conjoined various paintings and sculptures.


Robert Indiana has work featured in the permanent collections of numerous museums including the MoMA, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Stedelijk Museum in the Netherlands, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C., the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania and the Los Angeles County Museum.


Related Categories: Pop Art, Open Form Sculpture, Typography, Art of the 1960s, Post-War American Art, Text, Popular Culture, Outdoor Art, Work on Paper, Sculpture.