Brian Jungen

For more than two decades, Brian Jungen (b. 1970, Fort St. John, British Columbia; lives/works: North Okanagan, British Columbia) has been lauded for his ability to transform everyday commercial products into a range of museological objects. His sculptures and installations imitate forms as large as the skeleton of a whale, composed of plastic chairs, as well as Indigenous ceremonial objects such as masks produced from dissected and reconfigured Nike Air Jordan trainers. These works address the issues of dispossession and appropriation latent in the aesthetics of contemporary global economic, political, and cultural conflict.

Jungen has presented significant solo exhibitions at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2021); Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2019, 2011); Henry Art Gallery, Seattle (2017); Kunstverein Hannover, Germany (2013); Bonner Kunstverein, Germany (2013); National Museum of the American Indian, Washington (2009); Museum Villa Stuck, Munich (2007); Tate Modern, London (2006); Vancouver Art Gallery (2006); Witte de With, Rotterdam (2006); and New Museum, New York (2005). Modest Livelihood, a collaborative work with Duane Linklater, has been shown at the Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane (2019); Edinburgh Art Festival (2014); Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2013); and Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff Centre, in collaboration with dOCUMENTA (13) (2012).

Jungen’s work has been included in recent group exhibitions at the Toronto Biennial of Art (2022); FOR-SITE Foundation, San Francisco (2021); Copenhagen Contemporary, (2021); Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville (2018); Liverpool Biennial (2018); Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe (2017); National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (2017, 2013); De Paul Art Museum, Chicago (2016); Vancouver Art Gallery (2016); and the 9th Shanghai Biennale (2012). His large-scale bronze sculpture, Couch Monster: Sadzěʔ yaaghęhch’ill (2022), is the first-ever public art commission by the Art Gallery of Ontario. In 2002, he won the inaugural Sobey Art Award and the Gershon Iskowitz Prize in 2010. Jungen is a graduate of the Emily Carr College of Art and Design.