Lisa Yuskavage

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Lisa Yuskavage
Born (1962-05-16) May 16, 1962 (age 52)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Nationality American
Education Tyler School of Art, Yale University
Known for Painting

Lisa Yuskavage (YUS cav ITCH; born May 16, 1962) is a contemporary American visual artist who is primarily known for her figurative oil paintings that engage with the female form.[1] She currently lives and works in New York City.[2]

Early life[edit]

Yuskavage was born in 1962 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[2] She studied at the Tyler School of Art, which is a part of Temple University in Philadelphia, where she received her BFA in 1984.[2] In 1985, as a student, Yuskavage met her future husband, the artist Matvey Levenstein.[3] She was awarded her MFA in 1986 from Yale University’s School of Art, New Haven, Connecticut.[2]


Between 1984 and 1990, Yuskavage painted women that she later characterized as demure in nature.[4] At the suggestion of her husband, the artist Matvey Levenstein, Yuskavage began to imagine herself as the subject of her paintings, which allowed her to change her perspective and to assume a new character in her work.[4]

Yuskavage has previously cited the actor Dennis Hopper's character, Frank Booth, in David Lynch's Blue Velvet (film), as her inspiration for the source of the male gaze in her artworks.[4]

She is represented by David Zwirner in New York[2] and greengrassi, London.[5]


Yuskavage had her first solo exhibition in 1990.[6] In the mid-1990s she participated in the group exhibitions "Figure as Fiction" (1993), Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati; "My Little Pretty" (1997), Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; "Presumed Innocence" (1997); "Pop Surrealism" (1998), Aldrich Museum; and "The Nude in Contemporary Art" (1999).

Over the past decade, Yuskavage has had solo exhibitions at the Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo in Mexico City, Mexico (2006), the Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva, Switzerland (2001) and the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (2000). The artist’s work is in a solo exhibition at The Royal Hibernian Academy as part of Dublin Contemporary 2011, "Terrible Beauty: Art, Crisis, Change & The Office of Non-Compliance".

Major recent group exhibitions include "Between Picture and Viewer: The Image in Contemporary Painting'" at School of Visual Arts, New York (2010); '"Face to Face" at Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver, Colorado (2010); '"Bad Habits'" at Albright-Knox Gallery, Buffalo, New York (2009); "Bad Painting, Good Art" at Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien in Vienna, Austria (2008); "Diana and Actaeon: Forbidden Glimpse of the Naked Body" at Museum Kunst Palast in Düsseldorf, Germany (2008); "Paint Made Flesh" at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts in Nashville, Tennessee (2008); "America Today: 300 Years of Art from the USA" at the National Art Museum of China, Beijing, China (2007); "Artist Collaborations: Fifty Years of Universal Limited Art Editions", The Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York (2007); "Multiplex: Directions in Art 1970 to Now", The Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York (2007); "the Fifth International Biennial: Disparities and Deformations, Our Grotesque", SITE Santa Fe, Santa Fe, NM (2004); "Supernova: Art of the 1990s from the Logan Collection", San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA (2003); "de Kooning to Today: Highlights from the Permanent Collection", Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (2003); 2000 Whitney Biennial, The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (2000); and "Greater New York, P.S.1/The Museum of Modern Art", New York, NY (2000).


Work by the artist is held in the public collections of various museums, including:

  • Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
  • The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, California
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, California
  • Museum of Modern Art, New York[7]
  • San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, California[8]
  • Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, Washington
  • Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • The Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa, Florida
  • Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota[9]
  • Weatherspoon Art Museum, University of North Carolina
  • Greensboro, North Carolina
  • Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, New York.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Dobrzynski, Judith H. "A Painter and Her Art Trade Places; A Change in Style, and Provocative Works Find Success", New York Times, January 28, 1999.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Lisa Yuskavage", David Zwirner, Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  3. ^ Heller, Sabine. "Interview: Lisa Yuskavage", Purple Magazine, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  4. ^ a b c de la Torre, Mónica. "Lisa Yuskavage by Mónica de la Torre", BOMB Magazine, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  5. ^ "greengrassi: Lisa Yuskavage", greengrassi, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  6. ^ "Lisa Yuskavage Birthday: Curvy-Kitsch Master Painter Turns 51", The Huffington Post, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  7. ^ "The Collection: Lisa Yuskavage" MoMA, Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  8. ^ "Works by Lisa Yuskavage", San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  9. ^ "Lisa Yuskavage - Collections", The Walker Art Center, Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  10. ^ "Lisa Yuskavage: Critiquing Prurient Sexuality, or Disingenuously Peddling a Soft-Porn Aesthetic?," The Washington Post, April 22, 2007.

External links[edit]