Joyce Kozloff was born in Somerville, New Jersey, 1942. She earned a B.F.A. from Carnegie Institute of Technology. Pittsburgh, 1964 and an M.F.A. from New York’s Columbia University, 1967. She has been active in the women artists’ movement since 1970, in both Los Angeles and New York, where she was a founding member of the Heresies publishing collective. Here first solo show was at the Tirbor DeNagy Gallery, New York, in 1970. She was a central figure in the Pattern and Decoration movement during the 1970s, which repositioned the subjects and forms of so-called “minor” crafts-particularly non-western or pre-industrial-as the equal of those found in Euro-centric modernism. Her room sized installation, “An Interior Decorated”, including silk-screened hanging fabrics, a hand painted tile floor and ceramic pilasters, was adapted to four gallery and museum spaces between 1978 and 1980, providing much controversy.
By 1979, she moved into public art to expand the scale of her installations and increase their accessibility. Kozloff has executed sixteen major commissioned pieces, at sites such as the International Terminal, San Francisco Airport, 1983; Harvard Square Subway Station, Cambridge, MA, 1985; National Airport, Washington DC, 1997; Chubu Cultural Center and Museum, Kurayoshi, Japan, 2001; and the United States Consulate, Istanbul, Turkey, 2003. They are realized in glazed ceramic tile, glass and/or marble mosaic, with iconography appropriated from regional popular culture, architecture and design. In 1985, the Boston University Art Gallery initiated a traveling mid-career survey of Joyce Kozoff’s work, “Visionary Ornament,” highlighting the public art projects. As an antidote to the restrictions of public art, Kozloff developed a suite of humorous watercolors called “pornamments,” a fusion of decorative and erotic traditions, published as Patterns of Desire (New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1990). Her second book, Boys’ Art (New York: Distributed Art Publishers, Inc., 2003), is a study of war and masculinity, in which she rendered intricate military battles, then overlaid them with her son’s childhood drawings of battling superheroes.
For the past fifteen years, Kozloff’s art has centered on cartography, blending into her simulacra of old maps mmutations that raise the historical expansion of colonialist states. During the current wars against Afghanistan and Iraq, she has been a member of New York based political activist group, Artists Against the War, which creates visual projects and events to provoke discussion about U.S. government policies.
“Crossed Purposes”, the first show pairing Joyce Kozloff’s work with the photographs of her husband, Max Kozloff, was organized by the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio, and traveled to eight museums and university galleries between 1998 and 2000. She has been represented by DC Moore Gallery in New York since 1997, where she exhibits regularly.
Her work is in numerous private and public collections, including the Brooklyn Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, National Academy of Design and Whitney Museum of American Art in New York; National Gallery of Art, National Museum of American Art and National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC; Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM; Indianapolis Museum of Art; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Neue Galerie Sammlung Ludwig, Aachen, Germany; Yale University Art Museum, New Haven, CT; Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA; and M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco, CA.
In the last decade, Kozloff’s art was included in many group and solo exhibitions, including the Whitney Museum of American Art’s “The American Century: Art
- Photo by Mary Beth Edelson
- Courtesy of Joyce Kozloff
- Courtesy of Joyce Kozloff