Elaine Sturtevant

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Elaine Sturtevant, an American artist born 1930 in Lakewood, Ohio, has achieved recognition for her works that consist entirely of copies of other artists' works.

Sturtevant turns the concept of originality on its head. All of her works are copies of the works of other artists; none is an original. Her work includes copies of works by Andy Warhol, Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Beuys, Frank Stella, Felix Gonzalez-Torres. She masters painting, sculpture, photography and film in order to produce a full range of copies of the works of her chosen artists. In most cases, her decision to start copying an artist happened before those artists achieved broader recognition. Nearly all of the artists she chose to copy are today considered iconic for their time or style. This has given rise to discussions amongst art critics on how it has been possible for Sturtevant to identify these now famous artists at such an early stage


  • Anne Dressen et al. Sturtevant - The Razzle Dazzle of Thinking (Paris: Paris Musées, 2010).
  • Lena Maculan (Ed.). Sturtevant. Catalogue Raisonné (Frankfurt/Main: Museum für Moderne Kunst and Ostfildern Ruit: Hatje-Cantz, 2005).
  • Bruce Hainley. Sturtevant: Shifting Mental Structures (Hatje Cantz Publishers, 2002).