Jasper Johns: ‘Something Resembling Truth’ to feature more than 100 works spanning Johns’ 60-year career; The Broad will be the exhibition’s only U.S. venue and is the first major survey of the artist’s work to be shown in Los Angeles.
A collaboration with the Royal Academy, London, Jasper Johns: ‘Something Resembling Truth’will feature more than 100 of the artist’s most iconic and significant paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings, many never before exhibited in Los Angeles. With loans from international public and private collections, including significant works from the Broad collection, the exhibition will trace the evolution of the artist’s six-decade career through a series of thematic chapters. The exhibition encompasses the full range of Johns’ materials, motifs and techniques—including his unique use of encaustic (heated beeswax) and found-material collage in paintings—and the innovations he has achieved in sculpture and the graphic arts by expanding the possibilities of traditional media. Johns’ use of accessible images will be thoroughly examined, seen continually transformed through the artist’s engagement with a wide range of human experiences. In a departure from a retrospective approach, Johns’ artistic achievements will be illuminated through the juxtaposition of early and late works throughout the exhibition.
One of the most influential and important living artists to emerge in the 20th century, and one of America’s great living artists, Johns has been seminal to the Broad collection. His work emerged with and has influenced numerous other collection artists represented in depth, including Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Bruce Nauman, Ed Ruscha, John Baldessari and Sherrie Levine.
“Johns’ work is central to understanding contemporary American art. We viewed it as critically important to offer this in-depth and landmark exhibition to the public, particularly in Los Angeles where his work is not seen often enough. The show provides new understanding of the continuity and variety of his incomparable six-decade career, and we look forward to introducing a new generation to the full scope of Johns’ achievements,” said Joanne Heyler, founding director of The Broad. “Edye and I have admired the work of Jasper Johns for decades,” said Eli Broad, co-founder of The Broad. “His work is essential to our collection and to contemporary art as a whole, and we are pleased to be able to share this exhibition with visitors from Los Angeles and around the world.”
Image credits: Jasper Johns, Flag, 1967, encaustic and collage on canvas (three panels), 33 1/2 x 56 1/4 in., Art © Jasper Johns/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. The Eli and Edythe L. Broad Collection. Jasper Johns, Target, 1961. Encaustic and collage on canvas. 167.6 x 167.6 cm. The Art Institute of Chicago © Jasper Johns / VAGA, New York / DACS, London. Photo: © 2017. The Art Institute of Chicago / Art Resource, NY / Scala, Florence
Organized by the Royal Academy of Arts, London in collaboration with The Broad, Jasper Johns: ‘Something Resembling Truth’ is curated by Edith Devaney, contemporary curator at the Royal Academy, and independent curator Dr. Roberta Bernstein, author of Jasper Johns’Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings and Sculpture, who has written and lectured extensively on contemporary artists including Johns, Ellsworth Kelly and Robert Rauschenberg. Heyler and Associate Curator Ed Schad are host curators at The Broad. The exhibition title is taken from a 2006 interview, in which Johns said, “Yet, one hopes for something resembling truth, some sense of life, even of grace, to flicker, at least, in the work.”
At The Broad, Jasper Johns: ‘Something Resembling Truth’ will begin with an entire gallery devoted to Johns’ complex treatment of the American flag, arguably his best-known image, deployed famously at the outset of his career in the 1950s as testing ground for a new direction for 20th century art, and for decades afterward, as an enduring, compelling and ever-evolving subject evoking a variety of social meanings.
The exhibition will reveal the continuities and changes in Johns’ work throughout his career. His use of accessible and familiar motifs established a new vocabulary in painting as early as the 1950s—his treatment of iconography and the appropriation of objects and symbols made the familiar seem unknown through the distinctive, complex textures of his works. Through his groundbreaking paintings and sculptures, Johns charted a radical new course in an art world that had previously been dominated by Abstract Expressionism.
On view: February 10 – May 13, 2018
Admission is $25 for adults (children are free). Click here to purchase tickets. The Broad is located at 221 S. Grand Ave., LA, 90012; For more information on The Broad and to sign up for updates, please visit thebroad.org