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Claes Oldenburg

Born in Stockholm in 1929, Claes Oldenburg immigrated to the United States with his family in 1936. After graduating from Yale University (1952), he attended the School of The Art Institute of Chicago (1952-1954). Moving to New York again in 1956, he began creating environments and happenings. In 1960 he created an environment for the Judson Gallery called The Street which featured materials he had salvaged from the street over several years. Oldenburg’s second environment, The Store, 1961, was created in his studio, and it featured painted plaster sculptures of mundane consumer objects. The following year Oldenburg began to create the large soft sculptures for which he is best known. Retrospective exhibitions were organized by the Museum of Modern Art (1969) and the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (1995); in addition, the artist has created numerous monumental outdoor structures. Oldenburg is a skilled draftsman capable of a keen ironic wit, and he has created a number of notable prints and multiples. Oldenburg published one print with ULAE.

Photo of artist