Pace Gallery Takes on Glenn Kaino, Artist with a Focus on Today’s Most Pressing Social Issues

Glenn Kaino, a Los Angeles–based artist known for his collaborative works focused on pressing social issues, will now be exclusively represented by Pace Gallery. The artist had previously shown with Honor Fraser in Los Angeles and Kavi Gupta in Chicago.

Kaino’s work, which often takes the form of large-scale sculptures, has focused on a plethora of topics, from racial equity to climate change. With his art, Kaino often looks at structures of power that have created inequalities and crises, and offers potential ways to effect change. His work has been included in the 2004 Whitney Biennial, the Prospect.3 triennial in New Orleans in 2014, and the Desert X biennial in 2017.

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“Glenn Kaino connects the dots between macro and micro, and across time and space, upending art historical reference points to serve up work that highlights our most uncomfortable social realities,” Pace president and CEO Marc Glimcher said in a statement. “His acute engagement with the world around us results in a broad and inclusive art-making practice that feels vital to us in this moment.”

Kaino, who is currently the subject of a solo show at MASS MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts, will be involved in major projects in the L.A. area and elsewhere over the next few years. Among the most high-profile “Breath(e): Towards Climate and Social Justice,” which he will be co-curate with Mika Yoshitake. It will be a part of the Getty Foundation’s 2024 edition of Pacific Standard Time, which will focus on the links between various scientific fields and art-making in Southern California. Set to open that year at the Hammer Museum, the exhibition will consider how our climate crisis and other social justice movements are linked, and bring together the work of artists, activists, scientists, architects, and more.

Among Kaino’s other projects currently percolating are an installation that will open at the Compound in Long Beach, California, in July. A show of works borne from his 10-year collaboration with track-and-field star and activist Tommie Smith will go on view at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in the fall, and a solo exhibition will open at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles in 2022.

Kaino frequently works with other artists. In 1997, with fellow artists Daniel Joseph Martinez, Rolo Castillo, and Tracey Shiffman, he cofounded Deep River, a five-year project that operated as an artist-run gallery. It was meant to highlight the work of artists of color in Los Angeles, who at the time were extremely underrepresented at the city’s biggest galleries and museums.

In 2014, he cofounded the alternative space the Mistake Room, which has become known for its avant-garde and experimental exhibitions. With actor Jesse Williams, Kaino also launched Visibility, an organization that looks to create anti-colonial interventions in technology and media. He also has a forthcoming project with the Atlantic magazine and the art-and-technology enterprise Superblue that will launch next March.

In a statement, Kaino said, “I am thrilled to be working with a gallery with such a storied history of supporting ground-breaking artistic voices. [Pace’s] enthusiasm for new modes of art marking and new ways of engaging diverse audiences far beyond the art world makes this a tremendously exciting context for my work.”


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