The city of New York together with Giorno's life partner - the Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone - are celebrating life, love and art, in a one of a kind retrospective; a cosmology of art shows happening in 12 different venues, sprang throughout his city, coinciding with the poet’s 80th birthday.

The exhibitions feature paintings, films, sound installations, drawings, archival presentations and a video environment, including work both by Giorno himself, as well as work that he has inspired.

@ cristina guadalupe galvan
I ♡ John Giorno is also a work of art by Rondinone, who has been creating sculptures, paintings, drawings and multi-media installations for almost three decades. With this project, Rondinone presents a prismatic portrait assembled from thoughtful arrangements of the materials, experiences and relationships that have defined Giorno’s astonishingly wide-ranging artistic career. Foremost, though, the project is a joyous celebration of Giorno’s ubiquitous presence in contemporary culture, as well as his myriad contributions to it.

The singularity of this monumental hybrid of artwork and exhibition is testament to the breadth, variation, and longevity of Giorno’s ongoing career, as well as Rondinone’s artistic vision. In its size and ambition, I ♡ John Giorno can be seen as a citywide work of public art. At the same time, it is an intimate expression of love and inspiration between two artist partners. It is an astonishing gesture of love on Giorno’s part to give the sum total of his life’s work to Rondinone as material for his own artwork.

@ cristina guadalupe galvan
Expanding upon the exhibition that took place at Palais de Tokyo in Paris from October 2015 to January 2016, Ugo Rondinone: I ♥ John Giorno has been re-conceptualized specifically for New York, highlighting Giorno’s significant relationship with the city, and his singular role in creating and fostering community here. The 18-part exhibition has been divided by Rondinone into chapters reflecting the layers of Giorno’s life and work, his longstanding influence on and dedication to his chosen hometown of New York City, and his relationships with artist friends, lovers and collaborators including: Richard Bosman, Phong Bui, Angela Bulloch, Anne Collier, Verne Dawson, Judith Eisler, John Giorno, Mark Handforth, Matthew Higgs, Pierre Huyghe, Françoise Janicot, Scott King, Elizabeth Peyton, Ugo Rondinone, Erik Satie, Kendall Shaw, Michael Stipe, Billy Sullivan, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Peter Ungerleider, Joan Wallace, and Andy Warhol, whose work will be presented as part of the events.

The festival is an unprecedented collaboration between leading non-profit and alternative spaces across New York, which are joining forces for the first time to mount a multilayered exhibition on a single subject. Partner venues include: Artists Space, High Line Art, Howl! Happening, Hunter College Art Galleries, The Kitchen, New Museum, Red Bull Arts New York, Rubin Museum of Art, Sky Art, Swiss Institute, White Columns, and 80WSE Gallery.

@ cristina guadalupe galvan
Ugo Rondinone: I ♥ John Giorno is made possible in part by public funds from the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia. The organizing committee gratefully acknowledges generous support from Van Cleef & Arpels, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and LUMA Foundation. Thanks to Almine Rech Gallery, Brussels, London, New York and Paris; Elizabeth Dee Gallery, New York; Esther Schipper, Berlin; Galerie Eva Presenhuber, New York and Zürich; Gladstone Gallery, Brussels and New York; Galerie Kamel Mennour, London and Paris; Kukje Gallery, Seoul; and Sadie Coles, London for production support. Additional thanks to Ophelia and Bill Rudin as well as the General Consulate of Switzerland in New York for their gracious contribution, and to agnès b. for their kind support.

Pictures from the show in Paris at the Palais de Tokyo by Cristina Guadalupe Galván