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Fred Wilson’s short biography
by Karima Boudou

Wednesday 4 May 2016

Fred Wilson (born in 1954 in the Bronx, USA; lives and works in New York) has created site-specific installations in collaboration with museums and cultural institutions throughout North America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. His work encourages viewers to reconsider social and historical narratives and raises critical questions about the politics of erasure and exclusion. Beginning with the groundbreaking and critically acclaimed exhibition Mining the Museum (1992-93) at the Maryland Historical Society, Fred Wilson has juxtaposed and re-contextualized existing objects to create new installations, which alter their traditional meanings or interpretations.

His many accolades include the prestigious John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Grant (1999). In 2003, Wilson represented the United States at the 50th Venice Biennale with the solo exhibition, "Fred Wilson: Speak of Me as I Am". This work has next been exposed on two editions of "Glasstress", as part of the 53rd & 54th Venice Biennale (2009 & 2011), which highlighted some examples of use of glass by historical and contemporary artists. Fred Wilson took part of many international exhibitions, such as the Liverpool Biennial of Contemporary Art, in the UK (1999) and "Cocido y Crudo" at Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain (1994-5). He had a major retrospective "Fred Wilson, Objects and Installations 1979-2000," which traveled to museums around the U. S. such as the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Chicago Cultural Center and the Berkeley Art Museum, between 2001-2004. His works feature in prestigious public collections such as those of the Tate Modern in London, MoMA and Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, or of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.


Read Karima Boudou’s interview with Fred Wilson.