1975, Bà Ria, Vietnam
Through a body of personal work inspired also by historical and political events, Danh Vo probes into the inheritance and construction of cultural conflicts, traumas, and values. When Vo was a child, his family fled Vietnam and settled in Denmark: their assimilation to European culture and the political events that prompted their flight are intrinsic to his artistic investigations. His work sheds light on the relation between the inseparable elements that shape our sense of self, both through collective history and private experience. Exhibiting objects based on the ready-made principle is a characteristic artistic strategy of Danh Vo; through objects charged with symbolism that retains the sublimated desire and sadness of individuals and entire cultures, he examines how meaning changes with context. Danh Vo’s work, enigmatic and poetic, deftly avoids didacticism as he explores the power structures behind liberal societies and the fragility of our nation-state notions.
Danh Vo studied at KADK-The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Denmark and at the Städelschule in Frankfurt, Germany. He’s been awarded with the Hugo Boss Prize in 2012 and the Blauorange Kunstpreis by the Deutsche Volksbanken und Raiffeisenbanken in 2007; in 2009 he was nominated for the Preis der Nationalgalerie für junge Kunst in Germany.
Danh Vo currently lives in Mexico City.
Major solo exhibitions include: Danh Vo oV hnaD, The National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan; Danh Vo Presents, The Nivaagaard Collection, Denmark (2020); Dahn Vo: Untitled, South London Gallery (2019); Danh Vo, CAPC Bordeaux (2018); Danh Vo: Take My Breath Away, Guggenheim Museum, New York and SMK Copenhagen (2018); Ng Teng Fong Roof Garden Commission series: Danh Vo, National Gallery Singapore (2016-17); Banish the Faceless / Reward your Grace, Palacio de Cristal del Retiro, Madrid (2015); Ydob eht ni mraw si ti, Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany (2015); Danh Vo: Wad al-ḥayara, Museo Jumex, Mexico City (2014/2015); Danh Vo: We The People (detail), Faurschou Foundation Beijing (2014); We The People, commissioned by Public Art Fund for the Brooklyn Bridge Park, New York (2014); I M U U R 2 (Hugo Boss Prize), Guggenheim Museum, New York (2013); Chung ga opla, Villa Medici, Rome (2013); Fabulous Muscles, Museion – museo d’arte moderna e contemporanea di Bolzano, Italy (2013); Go Mo Ni Ma Da, Musée de’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2013); We The People (detail) 2010-2013, Art Institute of Chicago, United States (2012); Vō Danh, Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (2012); JULY, IV, MDCCLXXVI, Kunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel, Germany (2011); Hip Hip Hurra, SMK- National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhagen (2010); Les fleurs d'intérieur, KADIST, Paris (2009); Danh Vō Where the Lions Are, Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland (2009); Package Tour, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2008).
The artist has exhibited in numerous international group shows, such as: Stories of Almost Everyone, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, United States (2018); Stepping into the Unknown, National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan (2018); Question the Wall Itself, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, United States (2017); Everything you need to know about the FY foundation: an exhibition, Frank F. Yang Art and Education Foundation | YOU Space, Shenzhen, China (2017); Versus Rodin: bodies across space and time, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (2017); Shame: 100 reasons for turning red, Deutsches Hygiene-Museum, Dresden, Germany (2017); Collected by Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2016); Good Dreams, Bad Dreams - American Mythologies, Aishti Foundation, Beirut Libanon (2016); Sculpture on the Move 1946 – 2016, Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland (2016); The Precarious, The Menil Collection, Houston, United States (2015); Magnificent Obsessions: The Artist as Collector, Barbican Centre, London (2015); The Ungovernables, New Museum, New York, (2012); Thatʼs the Way We Do It, Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (2011); Heroes, Galleria d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Torino, Turin, Italy (2011); Strange Comfort, Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland (2010); Morality – Act II: From Love to Legal, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, The Netherlands (2009); Preis der Nationalgalerie für junge Kunst 2009, Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin (2009); Jahresgaben 2008, Kunstverein München, Munich, Germany (2008); The California Files: Re-Viewing Side Effects of Cultural Memory, CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco (2007), among others.
Vo participated in the International Art Exhibition at the 55th Venice Biennial (2012), represented Denmark at the 56th Venice Biennial (2015) with the exhibition mothertongue and participated at the 58th Venice Biennale (2019).