Sterling Ruby (American, b.1972) was born on an American military base in Germany, and was raised in New Freedom, PA. After working in construction for several years, he attended the Pennsylvania School of Art & Design. Ruby then went on to receive a BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA, where he was a teaching assistant for artist Mike Kelley (American, 1954–2012). Ruby works in a variety of media, including ceramic, painting, collage, urethane sculpture, and video. Heavily influenced by the punk movement, as well as Graffiti and Street Art, the artist’s works are often intentionally marked up and defaced.

Through examining the most marginalized members of society, Ruby seeks to expose the cultural mechanisms of control that underlie contemporary life. In 2008, his massive installation Supermax was first shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles Design Center. For this show, Ruby referenced American maximum security prisons through aerosol paintings, collages, and massive geometric sculptures made of Formica, urethane, and brass, as well as soft sculptures in the form of blood drops.

Ruby has exhibited nationally and internationally at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing, China; The Museum of Modern Art in New York, NY; the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, IL; the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, PA; the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, MN; the Garage Centre for Contemporary Culture in Moscow, Russia; the Saatchi Gallery in London, UK; and MACRO in Rome, Italy; among others. His work is also part of the permanent collection of institutions worldwide, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, NY; the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, CA; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in Los Angeles, CA; the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, IL; the Seattle Art Museum in Seattle, WA; and the Tate Collection in London, UK. His work was also featured in the 2014 Whitney Biennial.

Sterling ruby
Sterling Ruby
Stuttgart, 1972

Current Exhibitions

More / Less

de la Cruz Collection

01 Dec — 30 Nov
More / Less groups works by several international contemporary artists, produced during the last thirty years. The exhibition wants to investigate shifts in contemporary visual culture creating a mutual dialogue between...

Upcoming Exhibitions

Sterling Ruby at ICA Miami

Institute of Contemporary Art Miami – ICA
07/11/2019 — 02/02/2020

Past Exhibitions

Sterling Ruby / H.R. Giger

Spazio Maiocchi
14/06/2019 — 14/07/2019

Face and Form

de la Cruz Collection
01/12/2017 — 30/11/2018

Progressive Praxis

de la Cruz Collection
29/11/2016 — 29/11/2017

Sterling Ruby: The Jungle

Sprüth Magers Berlin
17/09/2016 — 29/10/2016

Sterling Ruby

Belvedere, Winterpalais 08/07/2016 — 16/10/2016

Solo Shows

DRFTRS. Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium.
WIDW. Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium.
HEARTS + CLUBS. Pierre Marie Giraud, Berlin, Germany.
Sterling Ruby: Ceramics. Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA; traveling to Museum of Arts and Design (MAD), New York, NY.
VERT. Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan.

MIX PIZ. Vito Schnabel Gallery, St. Moritz, Switzerland.
Sterling Ruby. Gagosian Gallery, New York, NY.

THE JUNGLE. Sprüth Magers, Berlin, Germany.
Sterling Ruby. Winterpalais, Belvedere Museum, Vienna, Austria.
WORK WEAR: Garment and Textile Archive 2008–2016.
Sprüth Magers, London, England.

STOVES. Kulm Hotel, St. Moritz, Switzerland.
STOVES. Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature, Paris, France.
PARIS. Gagosian Gallery, Le Bourget & Rue de Ponthieu, Paris, France.
Study #8. Monument Stalagmite/P.T.A.C. David Roberts Art Foundation. London, England.
Spray, Memory: Sterling Ruby & Mike Kelley. Inigo Philbrick, London, England. SCALES. Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium.
ECLPSE. Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, Belgium.

VIVIDS. Gagosian Gallery, Hong Kong.
BC RIPS. Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan.
SUNRISE SUNSET. Hauser & Wirth, New York, NY.
STERLING RUBY. Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD

Group Shows

Dior: From Paris to the World. Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO.
West by Midwest: Geographies of Art and Kinship. Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Chicago, IL.
Fire and Clay. Gagosian, Geneva, Switzerland.
Present Tense: Selections from the Lenhardt Collection. Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ.
SHANZINI: Shannon Michael Cane and Printed Matter. Printed Matter, Inc., New York, NY.
Playlist. Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran, Montreal, Canada.
Color, Form, Unicorn: Recent Acquisitions. UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley, CA.
12th Summer Programme. Bold Tendencies, London, England.
Group Exhibition. Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo, Japan.
A Mind of Winter. Chesa Planta, Samaden, Switzerland.
Close at Hand: Modern and Contemporary Scultpure, Gagosian, San Francisco, CA

Contacts & Details

City of birth: Stuttgart Country of birth: Germany Date of birth: 1972 Lives in: Los Angeles, USA