Joseph Kosuth

ARTIST Joseph Kosuth

Born in 1945, in Toledo, Ohio, USA
Lives and works in London and New York

Joseph Kosuth is one of the pioneers of conceptual and installation art, initiating language based works and appropriation strategies in the 1960’s. His work has consistently explored the production and the role of language and meaning within art.

His nearly fifty year inquiry into the relation of language to art has taken the form of installations, museum exhibitions, public commissions and publications throughout Europe, the Americas and Asia including most of the Documentas and Venice Biennales in recent decades. Educated at the Cleveland Institute of Art, 1963–64, The School of Visual Arts, New York City, 1965–67 and at the New School for Social Research, New York, (anthropology and philosophy), 1971–72.

In 2001 he received the Laura Honoris Causa, doctorate in Philosophy and Letters from the University of Bologna. He received several honours and awards, among them the Chevalier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres in France (1993), the Decoration of Honour in Gold for services to the Republic of Austria (2003) and the induction into the Royal Belgian Academy in 2012.

In June 1999, a 3.00 francs postage stamp was issued by the French Government in honor of his work in Figeac.


Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, USA

Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA

The National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada

Tate Modern, London, UK,

Ludwig Collection, Aachen, Germany

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA

Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, Oberlin, USA

Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA

Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands

The Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Collection Count Giuseppe Panza di Biumo, Milan, Italy

Haus Lange, Krefeld, Germany

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia

Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Australia

Australian National Gallery, Canberra, Australia

Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France

Kunstmuseum Des Kantons Thurgau, Kartause Ittingen, Ittingen, Switzerland

Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart, Germany

Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Gand, Belgium

Solo exhibitions – selection


Joseph Kosuth, Texts for Nothing (Waiting for-) Samuel Beckett, in play, Haus Konstruktiv, Zurich, Switzerland



An Interpretation of This Title, Nietzche, Darwin and the Paradox of Content, Edinburgh International Festival, Edinburgh, UK



Il Linguaggio dell’Equilibrio / The Language of Equilibrium, Biennale di Venezia 52. Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte Eventi Collaterali, Congregazione Mekhitarista di San Lazzaro, Venice, Italy


Joseph Kosuth and Ilya & Emilia Kabakov: Hans Christian Andersen-A Life World, Reykjavik Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland



Felix Gonzalez Torres and Joseph Kosuth, Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York, NY, USA
Joseph Kosuth and Ilya & Emilia Kabakov: Hans Christian Andersen-A Life World, Nikolaj, Copenhague Contemporary Art Center, Copenhague, Danemark



Re-defining the Context of Art: 1968-2004, The Second Investigation and Public Media, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands



Place of Writing, Five Works by Joseph Kosuth, from One and Three Chairs to ‘Ex Libris, J.-F. Champollion (Figeac), Musée Champollion, Figeac, France
Artist, Curator, Collector: James McNeil Whistler, Bernard Berenson and Isabella Stewart Gardner–Three Locations in the Creative Process, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, USA



Condizioni D’Assenza (Il nome e chi lo porta, a G.) / Conditions of Absence (The name and its bearer, for G.), Villa Medici – Académie de France, Roma, Italia
Eine verstummte Bibliothek / A Silenced Library, Kunstmuseum des Kantons Thurgau, Ittingen, Switzerland
Guests and Foreigners: The Years of Isolation. Including a Survey of Works 1965-1999), Chiba City Museum of Art, Chiba City, Japon, Tokushima Modern Art Museum, Tokushima, Japan(2000)



Ein Plan für: Eine verstummte Bibliothek / A Map for: A Silenced Library, Kunstmuseum des Kantons Thurgau, Kartause Ittingen, Switzerland



Guests and Foreigners, Rules and Meanings. A New Installation, With a Survey: 1965 – 1997, The Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Irland



Joseph Kosuth and American Conceptualism, Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo, Norway



A Play: The Herald Tribune, Kafka and a Quote, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington D.C, USA



The Play of the Unsayable: Ludwig Wittgenstein and the Art of the 20th Century, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Bruxelles, Belgium
The Play of the Unmentionable, [An Installation By Joseph Kosuth],The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, USA



Exchange of Meaning: Translation in the Work of Joseph Kosuth, Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Anvers, Belgique, Die Sigmund Freud Gesellschaft, Sigmund Freud Museum, Vienne, Autriche
Das Spiel des Unsagbaren: Ludwig Wittgenstein und die Kunst des 20. Jahrhunderts, Wiener Secession, Vienna, Autria



Modus Operandi: Cancellato, Museo di Capodimonte, Naples, Italy



Joseph Kosuth: 2 Installations, Musée St. Pierre, Lyon, France
Joseph Kosuth: Intentio (Project), Musée des Beaux-Arts de la Chaux-de-fonds, France



Joseph Kosuth: Bedeutung von Bedeutung, Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart, Germany
Joseph Kosuth: Cathexis, Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Gand, Belgium



Joseph Kosuth: Ten Partial Descriptions, P.S. 1, Queens, USA



Joseph Kosuth: Texte/Contexte, Galerie Eric Fabre, Paris, France ; Joseph Kosuth, Text/Context (Köln-Munchen), Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich, Germany
Joseph Kosuth: Text/Context (New York), Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, NY, USA ; Joseph Kosuth: Dix Descriptions Partielles, Musée de Chartres, Chartres, France



Joseph Kosuth: Tekst/Kontekst, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Joseph Kosuth: Text/Context, Centre d’art contemporain, Geneva, Switzerland
Joseph Kosuth: Text/Context, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, UK



Joseph Kosuth: Practice/ Praktijk/ Pratique, Internationaal Cultureel Centrum, Anvers, Belgium
Joseph Kosuth: Practice/Pratique/Praticia, Galerie Eric Fabre, Paris ; Joseph Kosuth, The Renaissance Society, Chicago, USA
Joseph Kosuth: Beiträge zur Konzeptuellen Kunst 1965-1976, Kunsthalle Bremen, Germany



Joseph Kosuth: Face/Surface (with Sarah Charlesworth), Liliane & Michel Durand-Desert, Paris, France
Joseph Kosuth: The Tenth Investigation 1974 Proposition 4, Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, NY, USA



Joseph Kosuth: Investigations sur l’art et problématique 1965-1973, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris, France
Joseph Kosuth: The Tenth Investigation 1974, Proposition 3, Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Canada
Joseph Kosuth: The Tenth Investigation, Proposition 7, Galleria Sperone-Fischer, Roma, Italy



Joseph Kosuth: Art Investigations and Problematics 1965-1973, Kunstmuseum Luzern, Switzerland
Westfalischer Kunstverein, Munster et Tubingen, Germany Kunstraum, Munich, Germany
Joseph Kosuth: The Tenth Investigation, Proposition, Claire Copley Gallery, Los Angeles, USA



Joseph Kosuth: Recent Work – The Ninth Investigation, Proposition 1 and Joseph Kosuth: Early Work – Proto- Investigations = Fifteen Works 1965-1967, Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, NY, USA



Joseph Kosuth, Galerie Paul Maenz, Cologne, Germany
Joseph Kosuth: el arte come idea come idea, Centro de Arte y Communication, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Joseph Kosuth: The Eighth Investigation, Proposition 3, Leo Castelli, New York, NY, USA



Joseph Kosuth: The First Investigation (Art as Idea as Idea 1968), Jysk Kunstgalerie, Copenhague, Danemark
Joseph Kosuth, The Second Investigation (Art as Idea as Idea 1968), Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Aarhus, Danemark
Joseph Kosuth: 15 Locations 1969/70 (Art as Idea as Idea 1966-1970), Christ College, Oxford, UK
Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Halifax, Canada, Instituto Torcuato di Tella, Buenos-Aires, Argentina
St. Martin’s School of Art, Londres, Royaume-Uni, Pinacotheca, Australie, Kunsthalle, Bern, Switzerland, Art & Project, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Joseph Kosuth, Galerie Daniel Templon, Paris, France



Joseph Kosuth/Robert Morris, Laura Knott Gallery, Bradford Junior College, Bradford, Joseph Kosuth: 15 Locations 1969/70
‘(Art as Idea as Idea)’. Pasadena Art Museum, Pasadena, USA, Douglas Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, USA, Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, NY, USA, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Canada



Nothing, Gallery 669, Los Angeles, USA



Fifteen People Present Their Favorite Book (Robert Morris, Ad Reinhardt, Sol Lewitt, Robert Mangold, Dan Graham, Robert Smithson, Carl André, Robert Ryman, and others), Lannis Gallery (Museum of Normal Art), New York, NY, USA

Public projects and architectural projects since 2000


Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris, France


A Last Parting Look (for C.D.) Arts Council Commission on Leathermarket Street, London, UK



Denver Convention Center Public Art Hotel Project, Denver, CO, USA
The Context of Construction, Edward Zorinsky Federal Building, Omaha, Nebraska, USA
De iis quae ad speculum et in Speculo, Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Roma, Italy



Located World, La Marrana, Parco d’arte ambientale La Marrana, Montemarcello, Italy



In the Lair of the Skull, Gannett Headquarters, McLean, Virginia, USA
Paul-Löbe-Haus (German Parliament), Berlin, Germany
Doppio Passaggio (Torino), Ponte Vittorio Emanuele, Turin, Italy
Ripensare il Vero (neon text from Benedetto Croce, 144 meters long ), Comune di Napoli, Piazza Plebiscito, Naples, Italy
Queste cose visibili (Napoli, per Ferruccio Incutti) (neon text from Dante Alighieri), La Metropolitana di Napoli, Piazza Dante underground station, Naples, Italy
Sapporo Dome, Japan (initiated for the 2002 World Cup)



American Foundation for AIDS Research, Head Office, New York, NY, USA
Leibniz Located (Exterior), Zeughaus, Hannover, Leibniz Located (Interior), VGH, Hannover, Germany
Hiroshima Municipal Motomachi High School. In honor of Kenzaburo Oé, 1994 Nobel Laureate and author of Hiroshima Notes, Japan


Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial