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Photo: American Academy in Berlin

Artist, New York

Philip Morris Fellow - Class of Spring 2000

Jenny Holzer received the first American Academy in Berlin/Philip Morris Art Prize Fellowship for Advanced Studies, for spring semester 2000.


Holzer completed her undergraduate work at Ohio University, Athens, with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. In 1975 she entered the master of fine arts program at Rhode Island School of Design, where she started working with language. Holzer moved to New York in 1977 to enroll in the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program, and there she began her first series of public art texts, Truisms, which she displayed on posters throughout the city. Since then, Holzer has exhibited her writing in a variety of public and gallery spaces, on electronic signboards, metal plaques, marble benches, floors and sarcophagi. Most recently she has added xenon projections to her diverse list of media, casting enormous texts onto buildings, monuments and bodies of water.


Holzer has authored twelve text series, including Erlauf (1995), Arno (1996), and Blue (1998). Holzer’s work has been shown in a number of solo and group exhibitions worldwide, including Times Square, New York (1982), the Guggenheim Museum, New York (1989), the 1990 Venice Biennale, where she claimed the Leone d’Oro grand prize for best pavilion, Art Tower, Mito, Japan (1994), Centre Pompidou, Paris (1996), Museum of Modern Art, New York (1997), Yvon Lambert Gallery, Paris (1998), Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, Rio de Janeiro (1999), the Whitney Museum of American Art (1999), and the Oslo Museum of Contemporary Art (2000). In addition, she has executed permanent installations for institutions such as MAK, Vienna (1993), Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Toyota, Japan (1995). the Hamburger Kunsthalle (1996), the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao (1997), and the Reichstag, Berlin (1999). Holzer has also received the Crystal Award from the World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland in 1994, and an honorary Doctorate of Arts from Ohio University in 1994 and Williams College in 2000.

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