Louise Lawler lives and works in New York.
She holds a B.F.A. from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. Her mostly photographic work collapses a variety of art-world positions—artist, photo editor, graphic designer, curator, art dealer, critic, and publisher—and raises open-ended questions about the use, meaning, and value of art. Expanding upon the legacy of institutional critique initiated by an earlier generation of Conceptual artists, including Marcel Broodthaers, Daniel Buren, Hans Haacke, and Michael Asher, Lawler puts a frame around the contexts that define art and the audience’s relationship to it. Aiming her self-reflexive lens at art’s institutions—museums, galleries, auction houses, private collections, art fairs, art storage, and other poststudio contexts—her “pictures present information about the ‘reception’ of artworks,” the artist reports matter-of-factly. But Lawler’s closely cropped photographs also frame specific ambiguities, including art’s relationship to the inchoate economies of desire, exchange, prestige, gender, and power. She has been a part of multiple group and solo exhibitions since the 1970s, and her work is part of public and private collections all around the world. Louise Lawler is represented by Metro Pictures in New York, Sprüth Magers in Berlin and London, and Yvon Lambert in Paris.