Barbara Kasten

born 1936

Barbara Kasten, ‘Untitled 11’ 1979
Untitled 11 1979
© Barbara Kasten
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Biography

Barbara Kasten (born 1936) is an American artist. Kasten trained as a painter and textile artist at the University of Arizona (BFA), the California College of Arts & Crafts (MFA) with Trude Guermonprez, and a Fulbright-Hays Fellowship at the University of Fine Arts in Poznań with Magdalena Abakanowicz. She was influenced by the Bauhaus movement and László Moholy-Nagy. After school, she turned to photography to encompass her interdisciplinary work, beginning in 1973 with the commercial process of diazotype and subjects reminiscent of performance art. Working for over 40 years, she is often inspired by the act of depicting a three-dimensional space onto a two-dimensional plane. She often uses mirrors, lights, and props for conceptually-based pieces. As she continues her practice, her work has continued to pure abstraction.

Kasten has exhibited worldwide and is a sought after lecturer and has had many commissions and residencies, including a Capp Street Residency. She has taught and influenced many photographers and artists and holds the position of Distinguished College Artist at Columbia College Chicago. She has won many awards, notably the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship.

In 2015, Kasten was given the first career survey of her work, entitled "Barbara Kasten: Stages" at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia. It traveled to the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts where it was presented in conjunction with the Chicago Architecture Biennial.

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