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Julie Mehretu

Julie Merhetu was born in Ethiopia in 1970 but was raised in the US, and lives and works in New York City. Even when she’s still a young artist, she’s already quite famous. She has a rich mixed background, from her family to her studies and that clearly reflects on her art.
Her drawings/paintings are very complex and are closer to a map than to a classic painting, if there is such thing as that. Her work is all about structure, architectural plans, mapping, and layers and layers of lines, shapes and marks. Abstract geometry taken to another level.
She paints by applying thin paint layers, than then she sands to get an ultra smooth shiny surface, almost erasing any evidence that the work was created by a person.
She likes to work on VERY large surfaces, so you can imagine that every painting takes her a long time until it gets finished. That’s why she works with a team of assistants that help, each person in a different specialty, to complete the final painting.
I find her work fascinating, even when geometric abstraction is not my favorite
style, and I hope to see one of her works in person.
The experience must be something unique. Imagine a painting several feet wide and high with thousands of shapes and lines, like a huge map in which you can easily get lost. I surely would love to have one of those in my house and will never get tired of looking at it.
Stadia II, Julie Merhetu

If you live or are visiting the city of New York, there is an exhibition of Julie Mehretu works, titled Grey Area. These paintings were produced as the 15th commission of Deutsche Bank and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and were created in Berlin, Germany. This exhibition runs until October 6, 2010 in the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, 1071 5th Avenue (at 89th Street) New York, USA

Watch the full episode. See more ART:21.


Video: Art 21, Season 5, Full Episode "Systems" -  Julie Mehretu (first 14 minutes of the video)
Video:  Art 21, Julie Mehretu Studio Assistants
Video: Art 21, Julie Mehretu: “Mural”

Marian Goodman Gallery
White Cube
Painter as Architect, Swinging a Wrecking Ball The New York Times
Julie Mehetru’s Mural at Goldman Sachs, New York


Julie Mehretu: The Drawings
Julie Mehretu: The Drawings by Catherine De Zegher and Thelma Golden
Julie Mehretu: City Sitings
Julie Mehretu: City Sitings by Siemon Allen, Kinsey Katchka and Rebecca Hart
Julie Mehretu: Black City
Julie Mehretu: Black City by Agustin Perez Rubio, Marcus Steinweg, Cay Sophie Rabinowitz, MUSAC LeUn, and Julie Mehretu
Julie Mehretu: Grey Area
Julie Mehretu: Grey Area by Joan Young, Brian Dillon, and Julie Mehretu