Saint Louis, MO

Hannah Wilke: Art for Life's Sake at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation Museum

Steve Chao

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SAINT LOUIS, MO — Hannah Wilke (1940 – 1993) used sculpture, photography, video and works on paper to create an unabashedly boundary-crossing creative practice. Her experimental techniques and daring new forms reflect the vigor and joys of the body, making her one of the most important American painters of the 1960s.

To create work that affirms life, she applied a feminist critique to her era's oppressive gender and sexuality standards. Wilke declared, "I've always used my art to have life around me," and, “Art is for the purpose of life.”

Pulitzer Arts Foundation is hosting Hannah Wilke: Art for the Sake of Life. It is the first major exhibition of Wilke's seminal work in more than a decade. This retrospective shows the span of Wilke's whole career, from the 1960s to her untimely death in 1993.

The exhibition includes some of the artist's most well-known pieces, as well as some that have never been seen before. Wilke's diversity and unique approach to materials are demonstrated in this collection of approximately 120 works.

The exhibition sheds new light on this prominent artist, demonstrating her to be a trailblazer who was equally committed to improving women's status in society as she was to building a distinctive artistic approach.

Tamara H. Schenkenberg, Curator at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, and Kate Harnish, Curatorial Assistant, curated Hannah Wilke: Art for Life's Sake. The Scintilla Foundation has generously supported the exhibition.

The Pulitzer Arts Foundation is a museum that believes in the transformative power of interactive art experiences. The exhibitions and programs promote new ideas and views by presenting contemporary and historic art in conjunction with the iconic Tadao Ando building. The Pulitzer is a gathering place for art and people to contemplate and discuss ideas.

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