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Pope.L, Claim (Whitney Version), 2017. Photo: Whitney Museum.

William Pope.L Wins 2017 Bucksbaum Award

The multidisciplinary artist Pope.L (also known as William Pope.L) has been named the recipient of the 2017 Bucksbaum Award, which recognizes an artist featured in the current edition of the Whitney Biennial. Previous winners include Sarah Michelson and Zoe Leonard.

Pope.L is a visual artist and educator whose practice of nearly four decades ranges across performance, painting, installation, video, sculpture, and theater. His performances and interventions in public spaces have variously explored language, gender, race, social struggle, and community, among other themes.

Director Adam Weinberg noted, “For almost four decades, Pope.L has challenged us to confront some of the most pressing questions about American society as well as about the very nature of art. We are thrilled that he is joining the illustrious group of American artists whom we have honored with the Bucksbaum Award.”

Pope.L’s work was featured on the cover of the February 2015 issue of Artforum, in the context of David Joselit’s essay on visual evidence and the case of Eric Garner. Joselit wrote of Pope.L: “His art does not represent but rather suggests an elusive alternate space for consuming information—not the ostensibly democratic sphere of the forum, but the much more slippery, biopolitical locus, or threshold, of the hole.” The artist was also interviewed by Zachary Cahill for a 500 Words on artforum.com the same month.

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