Giulio Paolini Italian, b. 1940

Overview
Born in Genoa on 5 November 1940, he lives in Turin. 
 
Since he first participated in a group exhibition in 1961 and his first solo show in 1964, he has held countless exhibitions at galleries and museums worldwide. 
The major retrospectives include Palazzo della Pilotta in Parma (1976), the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam (1980), the Nouveau Musée in Villeurbanne (1984), the Staatsgalerie in Stuttgart (1986), the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna in Rome (1988), the Neue Galerie am Landesmuseum Joanneum in Graz (1998), the Fondazione Prada in Milan (2003), the Kunstmuseum in Winterthur (2005) and the Whitechapel Gallery in London (2014).
He has taken part in a number of Arte povera exhibitions, and on several occasions has shown his work at Documenta in Kassel (1972, 1977, 1982, 1992), and at the Venice Biennale (1970, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1984, 1986, 1993, 1995, 1997, 2013).
His work is represented in many international public collections. 
Trained as a graphic designer he has always had a special interest in the printed page. His artistic research has long been coupled with written statements and reflections collected in artist's books: from Idem, published in 1975 by Einaudi (Turin) with a foreword by Italo Calvino, to Quattro passi.
Nel museo senza muse
, brought out in 2006 by the same publisher, and L'autore che credeva di esistere, published by Johan & Levi (Milan) in 2012. 
Since 1969 he has also designed sets and costumes for the theatre, notably projects devised with Carlo Quartucci in the eighties and the recent sets for two Wagner operas directed by Federico Tiezzi (2005, 2007).
Works
Exhibitions
Biography

Associated with both Arte Povera and Conceptual Art, Giulio Paolini started his journey in the arts as a graphic designer to later on in his career embracing sculpture,  painting, and more recently, photography and collage. His early works reacted against his perception of the beauty of Art Informel, and focused instead on the material and formal components of painting, like the canvas and the frame. He was known at times to eschew the use of paint in favor of bare surfaces. Starting in the 1970s, his works became more conceptual, focused on the systems of creating and exhibiting art. Paolini also designed sets and costumes for theater, notably for director Carlo Quartucci, as well as Frederico Tiezzi’s versions of Richard Wagner’s operas.

 

Paolini is considered a leading figure in Conceptual Art and came to prominence as part of a generation of Italian artists including Michelangelo Pistoletto and Mario Merz. His belief that a work of art is not just itself in the ‘here and now’ but also the record of earlier traditions, has led him to investigate art’s relation to the past. Driven by an exploration into the nature of images, the making of art and the role of the artist, Paolini asserts that ‘to be authentic, a work of art must forget about its author.’
Giulio Paolini is still active and works mainly in Turin. 
 
The major retrospectives include Palazzo della Pilotta in Parma (1976), the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam (1980), the Nouveau Musée in Villeurbanne (1984), the Staatsgalerie in Stuttgart (1986), the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna in Rome (1988), the Neue Galerie am Landesmuseum Joanneum in Graz (1998), the Fondazione Prada in Milan (2003), the Kunstmuseum in Winterthur (2005) and the Whitechapel Gallery in London (2014).

He has taken part in a number of Arte povera exhibitions, and on several occasions has shown his work at Documenta in Kassel (1972, 1977, 1982, 1992), and at the Venice Biennale (1970, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1984, 1986, 1993, 1995, 1997, 2013).

His work is represented in many international public collections.  
Art Fairs
Events