Jack Pierson (American, b.1960) is a photographer, sculptor, and draftsman. Considered to be exceptionally prolific and comfortable working with a variety of media, Pierson is best known for his photography, Abstract sculptures, and collages. He is openly gay, and many of his photographs are images of men shot in a casual, erotic fashion. Pierson was born in Plymouth, MA. He received a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, MA, in 1984.

Pierson is considered to be part of the Boston School, which is a term used to refer to a group of photographers who worked in Boston in the early 1980s. Mark Morrisoroe (American, 1959–1989), David Armstrong (American, b.1954), Nan Goldin (American, b.1953), and Philip-Lorca diCorcia (American, b.1951) were all part of the Boston School and created a style of photography that centered on them photographing their mutual friends in intimate or casual settings. In 1990, Pierson created Goodbye Yellow Brick Road Part II, a collection of soap bars that referenced not only the titular brick road but also musicals, fantasy, and the glamor of Hollywood. In 1993, he created the photographs Chris and Neal and his Tunafish Salad.

Pierson published a series of 15 portraits under the title of Self Portrait in 2003. The book features photographs of men arranged from oldest to youngest, but photographs of Pierson are not included in the work. In 2004, his Self-Portrait series was part of the Whitney Biennial. Other examples of his work were shown in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, NY, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, MA, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. In 2011, Pierson and Elliotte Puckette (American, b.1967) were united in a two-person show of collages at the Danzinger Gallery. Pierson is also known for photographing noted celebrities and models, such as Snoop Dogg, Brad Pitt, Naomi Campbell, and Michael Bergin. He lives and works in Southern California and New York, and is currently represented by Cheim & Read.

Timeline

1960
Born in Plymouth, USA
1984
BFA, Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, USA
Lives and works in New York and Southern California, USA

Exhibitions

2013
THE END OF THE WORLD, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA
2010
Regina Gallery, Moscow, Russia (solo)
Go There Now and Take This With You, Bortolami Gallery, New York, USA (solo)
Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture, National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C. (solo)
Kukje Gallery, Seoul, Korea (solo)
Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA (solo)
Jack Pierson: New Photographs, Galerie Sabine Knust, Munich, Germany (solo)
2009
Jack Pierson: Abstracts, Cheim & Read, New York, USA (solo)
Jack Pierson, Galleria Christian Stein, Milan, Italy (solo)
Flower Power, Villa Giulia - Centro di Ricerca Arte Attuale, Torino, Italy
Chelsea Visits Havana, Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Havana, Cuba
From The Archives: 40 Years, 40 Projects, White Columns, New York, USA
Les Rencontres Photographiques d’Arles, Arles, France
Le Chant de la Carpe, Parc Saint Léger – Centre d'art contemporain, Pougues-les-eaux, France
CAC Malaga, Malaga, Spain
2008
Other People: Portraits from Grunwald and Hammer Collections, Hammer Museum, UCLA, Los Angeles, USA
Ego Documents - The Autobiographical in Contemporary Art, Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern, Switzerland
Listen darling…the world is yours, Ellipse Foundation Contemporary Art Collection, Cascais, Portugal
Pretty Ugly, Maccarone, New York, USA
The Sum of Its Parts, Cheim & Read, New York, USA
Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium (solo)
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland
2007
Centre d'Art Santa Monica, Barcelona, Spain (solo)
Self Portraits, Sabine Knust, Munich, Germany (solo)
Jack Pierson, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA (solo)
Stripped Bare, C/O Berlin, Berlin, Germany
I Am As You Will Be - The Skeleton in Art, Cheim & Read, New York, USA
Martin Maloney, Robert Mapplethorpe, Jack Pierson, Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium
2006
The Golden Hour, Galerie Aurel Scheibler, Berlin, Germany
Melancholia Passing into Madness, Cheim & Read, New York, USA
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris, France
Survivor, Bortolami Dayan, New York, USA
Seeing the Light, Carl Solway Gallery, Cincinnati, USA
Seeing…Blue, The Gallery at Buck House, New York, USA
2005
Looking at Words: The Formal Presence of Text in Modern and Contemporary Works on Paper, Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York, USA
Project MTL, Centre d’Amherst, Montreal, Canada
Closing Down, Bortolami Dayan, New York, USA
Romance, Cristina Guerra Contemporary Art, Lisbon, Portugal
All in the Family, Texas Gallery, Houston, USA
The Culture of Queer, Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, USA
A Thousand Words, Inman Gallery, Houston, USA
Albert Merola Gallery, Provincetown, USA
Self Portraits, Galeria Javier Lopez, Madrid, Spain
Danziger Projects, New York, USA
Male Desire Two, Mary Ryan Gallery, New York, USA
Word Play, Julie Saul Gallery, New York, USA
Getting Emotional, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, USA
Drawings A to Z: Colecao Madeira Corporate Services, Porta 33, Ilha da Madeira, Portugal
Early Works and Beyond – Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Daniel Reich Gallery, New York, USA
Alison Jacques Gallery, London, England
2004
Word of Mouth, A Selection: Part I, Dinter Fine Art, New York, USA
Galerie Sabine Knust, Munich, Germany
Self Portraits, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA
Albert Merola Gallery, Provincetown, USA
Whitney Biennial, New York, USA
Jack Pierson, Alison Jacques Gallery, London, England (solo)
2003
Gallerie Roger Björkholmen, Stockholm, Sweden (solo)
New Work, Hamiltons, London, England (solo)
Neue Galerie Graz, Graz, Austria
Galerie Aurel Scheibler, Cologne, Germany
Cheim & Read, New York, USA
Why Jack Pierson, University of the Arts, Rosenwald – Wolf and Hamilton Galleries, London, England
2002
Truth, Galerie Aurel Scheibler, Cologne, Germany
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Salzburg, Germany
Jack Pierson: Recent Work, Angstrom Gallery, Dallas, USA
Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami, USA
André Simoens Gallery, Knokke-Zoute, Belgium
2001
Glenn Horowitz Bookstore, East Hampton, USA
Under the Top, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA
Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
Taché – Lévy Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
Galleria Photology, Milan, Italy
Centre George Pompidou, Paris, France
2000
Cheim & Read, New York, USA
Provincetown Art Association and Museum, Provincetown, USA
La Vie, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris, France
Robert Pearre Fine Art, Tuscon, USA
1999
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, USA
Kunstverein Heilbronn, Heilbronn, Germany
Cheim & Reid, New York, USA
Texas Gallery, Houston, USA (solo)
Albert Merola Gallery, Provincetown, USA (solo)
The Art Association, Provincetown, USA (solo)
Sprengel Museum Hannover, Germany (solo)
Espacio Aglutinador, Havana, Cuba (solo)
Roger Bjorkholmen Gallery, Stockholm, Sweden (solo)
1998
Aurel Scheibler, Cologne, Germany (solo)
Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA (solo)
Emotions & Relations, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany
Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany
American Fine Arts Co., New York, USA
1997
Aurel Scheibler, Cologne, Germany (solo)
Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (solo)
Musée d'art contemporain, Bordeaux, France
Kunstverein Frankfurt, Frankfurt, Germany
Museu d’Art Contemporani, Barcelona, Spain
1996
Galerie Phillipe Rizzo, Paris, France
Regen Projects, Los Angeles, USA
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA
Defining the Nineties: Consensus making in New York, Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami, and MOCA, Los Angeles, USA
Art at the End of the 20th century: Selections from the Whitney Museum of American Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA
NZET Project, Gent, Belgium (solo)
Luhring Augustine Gallery, New York, USA (solo)
White Cube, London, England (solo)
Module Centro Difuso de Arte, Lisbon, Portugal
Galerija Dante Marino Cettina, Stella Maris, Croatia
1995
Boston School, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, USA
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, USA
1993
1993 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA
Drawing the Line Against AIDS, Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA
1992
True Stories, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, England
Tom Cugllani Gallery, New York, USA
Galerie Aurel Scheibler, Cologne, Germany
1990
Simon Watson, New York, USA (solo)

Public Collections

Norsk Museum of Fotografi, Preus Fotomuseum, Horten, Norway
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA
Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, WA
The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN
The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Baltimore Museum of Contemporary Art, Baltimore, MD
CAPC, Bordeaux, France
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
FRAC, Korsika, France
Graphische Sammlung der ETH, Zurich, Switzerland
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA

Literature

2008
Juncosa, Enrique, Wayne Koestenbaum and Rachael Thomas. Jack Pierson. Milan: Charta, 2008.
2006
Kotz, Liz and Richard Marshall. Jack Pierson Desire/Despair: A Retrospective: Selected Works 1985-2005. New York: Rizzoli, 2006.