Dan Flavin

One of the most influential and renowned figures in the contemporary art scene, Dan Flavin actually started his formal career in the art field as a guard and elevator operator for several museums. This experience probably reinforced his insight into the studies of light and the use of exhibition space and exposed him to the Impressionists, Colorists, Modernists, and Dadaists whose influences are made explicit in his work through his practice of leaving pieces untitled yet dedicated to artists including Mondrian, Brancusi, Jasper Johns, and Duchamp.

Categorized against his will as a Minimalist or Abstract Expressionist, Flavin is best known for his unembellished, rationalistic displays of light-tubes, often shown in gigantic installations that sought to invigorate dead spaces or voids by painting them with the medium of light. Even before his death in 1996, he was recognized as one of the frontrunners of a wave that revolutionized American sculpture, as well as for being the first to use electric light in gallery-exhibited art, a practice widely emulated since.



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