Obituaries

'Humanity is not a completed project': Remembering Jimmie Durham (1940-2021)

Durham, who controversially claimed Cherokee heritage, took a humorous and anti-monumental approach to sculpture

Jimmie Durham, artist-activist who made work on Native American themes, has died aged 81

American artist who self-identified as Cherokee and advocated for Indigenous rights through his work, has passed away in Berlin

‘Passion and compassion in her poetry and painting’—tributes paid to Lebanese artist Etel Adnan who has died, aged 96

The writer and abstract artist currently has an exhibition on at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York

Achim Borchardt-Hume (1965-2021): an appreciation

The untimely death of the distinguished Tate Modern curator, who died last week at the age of 56, "leaves an enormous gap", writes former Tate director Nicholas Serota

Lance De Los Reyes, graffiti artist known as Rambo, has died, aged 44

The artist painted cryptic poems on billboards and walls across New York City

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Remembering Owen Luder, architect whose gifts ran far wider than the Brutalist landmarks he is known for

Two of his most famous buildings, the Tricorn Centre in Portsmouth and the Trinity Car Park and Shopping Centre in Gateshead, were demolished earlier this century

Alan Powers

Shortly before her death, artist Julie Green concludes 21-year project depicting the final suppers of US death row inmates 

The painter, who died in October from ovarian cancer, also turned the first meal of exonerated prisoners into an artwork

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Remembering Kaari Upson, Los Angeles artist who created The Larry Project, a seven-year-long series exploring the life of a mysterious stranger

Artist who found her subject when trespassing in abandoned houses in San Bernardino, California, and whose formal obsessions included "couches upon couches upon couches"

Soedarmadji Jean Henry Damais, Indonesian curator and historian, dies aged 78

The last director of the Jakarta History Museum was a leading advocate of the archipelago's traditional arts, crafts and designs

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Remembering Phillip King, a prolific New Generation sculptor whose career as an artist and a teacher spanned more than six decades

An artist who was always fascinated by new materials, he represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1968

Jon Wood

Former Bonhams owner Robert Brooks dies

The ambitious auctioneer started out in car racing before going into art and antiques, eventually retiring to his farm near Exmoor to rear a herd of beef cattle

Chuck Close, artist of monumental pictures and a monumental fall, dies at 81

The debate over the artist's place in post-1970 history, quiet since allegations against him were made in 2017, is sure to gather steam

Chuck Close, Photo Realist painter of large-scale portraits, has died, aged 81

The outsize artist retreated from public attention in his later years, following a diagnosis of dementia in 2015 and accusations of sexual harassment in 2017

Kaari Upson, Los Angeles artist who obsessively explored identity, family and Americana, has died, aged 51

The artist was known for years-long, multi-pronged projects based on singular figures—such as her mother or a mysterious man she dubbed “Larry”—and subjects

'Unafraid of upsetting the applecart': leading Rembrandt scholar Ernst van de Wetering has died, aged 83

The Dutch art historian, who worked on the Rembrandt Research Project for 47 years, made radical changes to the study of the Old Master painter

Dealer Inge Baecker, a pioneer of the Fluxus movement, dies in German floods

The gallerist was ill at home in Bad Münstereifel, one of the worst-hit towns

Christian Boltanski made a work that live-streamed his Paris studio. What will happen to it now that he has died?

After a boozy dinner in Paris, the French conceptual artist proposed the work to David Walsh, the founder of Tasmania’s Museum of Old and New Art—and it has been running for over a decade

Christian Boltanski, French conceptual artist, has died, aged 76

The artist, who was born just two weeks after Paris was liberated from Nazi control, was known for work that explored memory, loss and personal as well as cultural history

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Remembering Jackie Matisse, a pioneer of kite art and art in virtual reality who had a special feel for chance and the power of collaboration

She saw 'flying art' as a collaboration with wind and light and found ways to 'fly' her kites underwater and in galleries, kept in motion with blown air and mechanical reels

Arturo Luz, one of Asia’s most influential modernists, has died in Manila, aged 94

A key figure in Filipino neo-realism, Luz also co-founded and directed many of the country's leading art spaces

Eric Carle, author and illustrator of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, has died, aged 91

The artist’s early life in Germany exploring nature and the devastation and malnutrition his family experienced during the Second World War add personal poignancy to his later children’s books

Tair Salakhov, leading painter and 'father of new Russian art', has died aged 92

The Azerbaijani-born artist was one of the Soviet Union's most notable creatives during Khrushchev's cultural thaw

Mary Beth Edelson, feminist art pioneer, has died, aged 88

She was a founding member of the Heresies Collective and made activism as well as spirituality a major part of her practice

'Restless, experimental and enigmatic': Brazilian artist Carlito Carvalhosa has died, aged 59

He was the first living Brazilian artist to have a solo show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York

Karl Wirsum, life-long Chicago painter and member of the Hairy Who, has died, aged 81

An early interest in comics never left him, as could be seen in his colourful figurative work that reflected a love of robots and toys, as well as an admiration for El Greco

Patrick O’Connell, Visual Aids founder, has died, aged 67

The activist helped develop perhaps the most well known symbol of HIV and Aids awareness: the red ribbon

Eli Broad, an unexpected—and often unreasonable—arts patron

The self-made billionaire helped shape the Los Angeles art scene, while clashing with most of its prominent museum leaders

Eli Broad, who helped reshape the cultural landscape of Los Angeles, has died, aged 87

Billionaire art collector, businessman and philanthropist founded the museum that bears his name and helped shore up Disney Concert Hall, Lacma and MOCA

William T. Wiley, a founder of the Bay Area Funk Art movement and influential art teacher, has died, aged 83

A dedicated mentor, he also delighted in provocative enigmas in wide-ranging mediums

Hans Rasmus Astrup—the intensely private founder of Oslo’s Astrup Fearnley Museet—has died, aged 82

The Norwegian collector took an “early chance” on Damien Hirst and in 2001 bought Jeff Koons’s Michael Jackson and Bubbles sculpture for a then record $5.6m