Considered one of the most relevant artists of his generation, KAWS engages audiences beyond the museums and galleries in which he regularly exhibits. His prolific body of influential work straddles the worlds of art and design to include paintings, murals, large-scale sculptures, street art, and graphic and product design. Over the last two decades KAWS has built a successful career with work that consistently shows his formal agility as an artist, as well as his underlying wit, irreverence, and affection for our times. He often draws inspiration and appropriates from pop culture animations to form a unique artistic vocabulary for his works across various mediums.
Now admired for his larger-than-life sculptures and hard-edge paintings that emphasize line and color, KAWS’ cast of hybrid cartoon and human characters are perhaps the strongest examples of his exploration of humanity. His refined graphic language revitalizes figuration with big, bold gestures and keen, playful intricacy. As seen in his collaborations with global brands, KAWS’ imagery possesses a sophisticated humor and reveals a thoughtful interplay with consumer products. Highly sought after by collectors inside and outside the art world, KAWS’ artworks, with their broad appeal, have established him as one of the most prominent artists in today’s culture.
KAWS (b. 1974, Jersey City, New Jersey; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York) has exhibited internationally in major museums. His recent solo exhibitions include KAWS: WHERE THE END STARTS, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Texas (2016) and the Yuz Museum, Shanghai (2017); and KAWS, Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Longside Gallery, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom (2016). His work has also been the subject of solo exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis, Missouri (2017); the Brooklyn Museum, New York City (2015); Centro de Arte Contemporáneo, Málaga, Spain (2014); Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, Kansas (2013); Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia (2013); and the High Art Museum, Atlanta, Georgia (2011). He has donated art to a number of charitable causes, including pieces for auction at amfAR galas, including tonight’s event.