amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research

Awards of Courage

Julian Schnabel

New York Gala 2008 Honoree


Julian SchnabelA native of Brooklyn, New York, Julian Schnabel moved with his family to Brownsville, Texas, and earned his BFA at the University of Houston. Schnabel returned to New York in 1973 to participate in the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program. In 1978, he made his first plate painting, The Patients and the Doctors, and his first solo exhibition took place the following year at the Mary Boone Gallery in New York.

Schnabel’s paintings, sculptures, and works on paper have been the subject of retrospective exhibitions at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Whitechapel Gallery, London; the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; the Tate Gallery, London; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Schrin Kunsthalle, Frankfurt; Palacio Velazquez, Madrid; and Mostra d’Oltremare, Naples. In the summer of 2007, exhibitions of Schnabel’s paintings and sculpture took place in Rome and Milan; Derneburg, Germany; and San Sebastian, Spain.

His work is included in the public collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Guggenheim Museums, New York and Bilbao; the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Tate Gallery, London; the Metropolitan Museum, Tokyo; the Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid; the National Gallery,Washington, D.C.; the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Kunst Museum, Basel; and the Fondation Musée d‘Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg.

In 1996, Schnabel wrote and directed the feature film Basquiat about fellow New York artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. His second film, Before Night Falls, based on the life of the late exiled Cuban novelist Reinaldo Arenas, won the Grand Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival in 2000 and earned Javier Bardem an Academy Award nomination for best actor. Most recently, Schnabel directed the feature film, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, which won a Golden Globe for best foreign language film and earned Schnabel best director awards at both the Golden Globes and the Cannes Film Festival. The film also secured Schnabel a nomination for outstanding directorial achievement in 2007 from the Director’s Guild of America and an Academy Award nomination for best director.

Schnabel lives with his wife, Olatz, and their family in New York City; Montauk, New York; and San Sebastian, Spain.