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Jim Dine

Eight Hearts, 1970

A contemporary painter and assemblage artist, Jim Dine has created gestural, sometimes heavily impastoed work with a style that hearkens to Abstract Expressionism. A major early influence was Jasper Johns from whom Jim Dine learned methods of random juxtaposing of real objects shadowed by painted copies.

Since the mid-1970s, the work of Jim Dine has reflected his skill as a draftsman and has focused more on traditional pictorial problems rather than leading-edge improvisation.

Jim Dine was raised in Cincinnati, Ohio and studied at the Art Academy and the University of Cincinnati from where he earned a BFA in 1958. In 1959, Jim Dine moved to New York City where he established a studio for the major part of his career. Jim Dine was artist-in-residence for short periods including Williams College in Massachusetts, Oberlin College in Ohio and Cornell College in New York.

Early in New York, Jim Dine was part of a spontaneous performance artist group “Happenings” that included Red Grooms, Allan Kaprow and Claes Oldenburg. His works from that time, some with flashing lights, were part of the assemblage of events staged by those artists regardless of whether or not they had an audience.

In the following years, many of Jim Dine paintings had big letters and objects such as hatchets and saws that suggested viewer participation.

Works by Jim Dine are represented in most of the major art museums featuring contemporary American work including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Metropolitan Museum. A special exhibition of his work, “Jim Dine Walking Memory” was held at the Cincinnati Art Museum in October, 1999 to January 2000.

Sources include:
ARTnews, February 1996, “Dine Unrobed”
Peter Hastings Falk (ed.), Who Was Who in American Art
Matthew Baigell, Dictionary of American Art

Biography from the Archives of AskART.