Clifford Owens: Your Head is Connected to Your Body

Blank white wall with a dark gray cement floor with a faded yellow line to the left.

Photographs with an Audience: San Antonio (Ted Cruz) (2018), archival pigment print, 20" x 24".

Clifford Owens makes photographs, videos, performances, paper-works, installations, and texts. His works have appeared in many solo and group exhibitions, both nationally and internationally. Owens's solo museum exhibitions include Anthology at MoMA PS1; Better the Rebel You Know at Home in Manchester, England; and Perspectives 173: Clifford Owens at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. Owens's group exhibitions include Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary ArtGreater New York 2005Freestyle; and Performance Now: The First Decade of the New Century. His ongoing, performance-based projects have been widely presented in museums and galleries, including the Museum of Modern Art, Baltimore Museum of Art, and Brooklyn Academy of Music.

Owens studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, as well as Rutgers University, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program. His work has been supported by William H. Johnson Prize, Art Matters Grant, Louis Tiffany Comfort Award, New York Foundation for the Arts, New York Community Trust, Lambent Foundation Fellowship, and Rutgers University Ralph Bunche Graduate Fellowship. Owens has been an artist-in-residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem, Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program, MacDowell Colony, and Artpace. Publications, reviews, and interviews about his work have appeared in Art in America, The New York Times, Village Voice, Modern Painters, Artforum, The New Yorker, BOMB, The Wall Street Journal, The Drama Review, and in the following publications — Performa: New Visual Art Performance, Rethinking Contemporary Art and Multicultural Education, Why Art Photography? and Anthology, his exhibition book. He has written for several exhibition publications, The New York Times, Artforum, and Performing Arts Journal. His works are in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Baltimore Museum of Art, and the Studio Museum on Harlem.

Owens has been visiting faculty, guest critic, and lecturer at many institutions, including the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Cooper Union, Yale University, Columbia University, Williams College, New York University, Lafayette College, Virginia Commonwealth University, New York University, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, and currently at Sarah Lawrence College.

Owens was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He lives and works in New York City.

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