Ilya Kabakov


Ilya Kabakov is an Russian conceptual artist, born in Dnipropetrovsk in what was then the Ukrainian SSR of the Soviet Union. He worked for thirty years in Moscow, from the 1950s until the late 1980s. He now lives and works on Long Island.

Throughout his forty-year plus career, Kabakov has produced a wide range of paintings, drawings, installations, and theoretical texts — not to mention extensive memoirs that track his life from his childhood to the early 1980s. In recent years, he has created installations that evoked the visual culture of the Soviet Union, though this theme has never been the exclusive focus of his work. Unlike some underground Soviet artists, Kabakov joined the Union of Soviet Artists in 1959, and became a full-member in 1965. This was a prestigious position in the USSR and it brought with it substantial material benefits. In general, Kabakov illustrated children’s books for 3–6 months each year and then spent the remainder of his time on his own projects.



Paintings 2012-2015, Kewenig Gallery, Berlin, Germany
The Ball (Permanent Sculpture) – Kistefos Foundation Sculpture Park, Oslo, Norway

Works from MUMA KABACI’s Collection – Pera Museum, Istanbul, Turkey
Various Installations – Laleria Continua, San Gimignano, Italy
Ursulinenkirche – Höhenrausch 16, Linz, Austria
The Toilet on the River – Art Basel, Parcours
The Arch of Life – Longhouse Reserve, Hamptons, USA
Paintings – Kunsthaus, Zug, Switzerland
The Kabakovs and the Avant-Gardes – LAC, Lugano, Switzerland
Carpets by Artists – MOCA, Cleveland, USA

The Arch of Life (Permanent Sculpture) – Echigo Tsumari Art Triennale, Niigata, Japan
Art Appraisers Association of America, honoring Ilya & Emilia Kabakov, New York, USA
The Dream City – The Power Plant Museum, Shanghai, China
Ilya & Emilia Kabakov: The Two Times – Pace Gallery, New York, USA


El Lissitski – Ilya & Emilia Kabakov, Utopia & Reality, Kunsthaus, Graz, Austria
The Strange City, Monumenta, Grand Palais, Paris, France
Pace Gallery, London, England
Ilya Kabakov in Swiss Private collection, Kunsthauz, Zug, Switzerland
Angeologia, Antiguo Colegio de San Ildefonso Museum, Mexico City, Mexic


The Ship of Tolerance with Garage and The City of Moscow, Moscow, Gorky Park
The Ship Of Tolerance, Dumbo, New York, USA
El Lissitski – Ilya& Emilia Kabakov, Multimedia Museum, Moscow
The Red October Factory, Moscow, Russia
Museum Sztuki Wspotczesnej MOCAK, Krakau, Poland
Pace Gallery, New York, USA
Two Mountains, Sprovieri Gallery, London, Great Britain
The Happiest Man, Ambika P3, London, Great Britain


Ilya & Emilia Kabakov, Retrospective, Sprengel Museum Hannover. Hannover, Germany
Galleria Lia Rumma. Milan, Italy
The Henie Onstad Art Centre. Høvikodden, Norway
Kiev International Biennale. Kiev, Ukraine.
Museu de Arte do Rio Grande do Sul Ado Malagoli. Porto Alegre, Brazil
Ilya & Emilia Kabakov – El Lissitsky, Vanabbemuseum, Eindhoven, Holland


Ilya & Emilia Kabakov: Center of Cosmic Energy, Galerie Brigitte Schenk. Cologne, Germany.
HEMPHILL Fine Arts. Washington, D.C.
Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: I Don’t Know, Galeri Artist. Berlin, Germany. October 6-November 9, 2011.


Décor for Peter Eötvös’s Opera, The Tragedy of the Devil, National Theatre, Munich, Germany
The Blue Carpet, MACRO Museo di Arte Contemporanea. Rome, Italy.
The Flying Paintings, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac. Paris, France. March
The Flying Paintings, Sprovieri Gallery. London, United Kingdom.
Ilya Kabakov – Orbis Pictus: Der Kinderbuchillustrator als eine soziale Figur, Kunsthaus Zug. Zug, Switzerland.
Ilya & Emilia Kabakov: The Canon, Kewenig Galerie. Cologne, Germany.
The Printer’s Mistake, The State Hermitage Museum. St. Petersburg, Russia.


Entre Libre – Ilya Kabakov: 52 entretiens dans la cuisine communautaire, Galerie du Dourven. Trédrez-Locquémeau, Domaine due Douvren, France.
Ilya & Emilia Kabakov, Galleria Continua. San Gimignano, Italy.
Galleria Continua. Le Moulin, France.


The Canon, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Salzburg
Traveling Show, Japan – Children’s Books and Drawings. By Ilya and Emilia Kabakov.
The Museum of Modern Art, Hayama , Kanagaua
Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima
The Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo
Ashikaga City Museum, Gunma.
2 Hokkaido Prefecture Museum


Atlas Sztuki: Lodz, Poland; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Deweer Gallery: Belgium; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Reykjavik Art Museum: Iceland; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Sean Kelly Gallery; N.Y., USA.; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Michail Kewenig Gallery; Koln, Germany; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Galerie Brigitte Schenk; Koln, Germany; by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Thaddeus Ropac Gallery; Paris, France; by Illya and Emilia Kabakov
Versicherungskammer Bayern; Munich, Germany- The Theatrical projects by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Kunsthaus Zug: Zug ,Switzerland- The Utopian City by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Musée Les Abbatoirs: Toulouse, France- Installation Where Is Our Place? by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov. Nicolaj Art Center: Copenhagen, Denmark- 200 Years Since H.C. Andersen Birthday Installation.Morning, Evening, Night by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Serpentine Art Gallery: London, England – Installation The House of Dreams
Albion Gallery: London, England- The Utopian City and Other Projects


Niccolas Sprovieri Gallery: London, England- The White Cube
Siwa, Egypt: Installation/Performance: The Ship Of Siwa, with Egyptian Children
Art Cologne: Cologne, Germany- Brigitte Schenk Gallery. Installation Monument To Useless Things. Minoriten Galerien Graz: Graz, Austria- Steirischer Herbst 2005. Installation The Utopian City. Ilya and Emilia Kabakov Unrealizen Prijcts Utopische Archtecturen.


Mori Art Museum: Tokyo, Japan. Where Is Our Place? by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
The State Hermitage Museum: St. Petersburg, Russia. Organized by Guggenheim Foundation Museum, NY, NY.
Incident in the Museum and Other Installations
Cleveland Museum of Contemporary Art: Clevelnd, Ohio. The Teacher and the Student, Charles Rosenthal and Ilya Kabakov.
Kunsthalle Bielefeld: Bielefeld, Germany- The Utopian City and Other Project
MAXXI Museum of Contemporary Art: Rome, Italy- Where Is Our Place


Fondazione Querini Stampalia: Venice, Italy. 50th Venice Biennial. Where Is Our Place? by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov
Traveling to Mori Art Museum, Tokyo and Museo Nazionale delle Art del XXI Secolo, Rome, Italy.


Kunsthalle Göppingen, Göppingen, Germany: Universal System of Depicting Everything
The Chinati Foundation: Marfa, Texas. Ilya Kabakov Children’s Books and Related Drawings


Columbus Museum of Art: Columbus, Ohio: 20 Ways to Get an Apple, Listening to the Music of Mozart. With Emilia Kabakov


“The Palace of Projects”, by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Armory, New York, organized by the Public Art Fund
“Ilya Kabakov: 1968-1998”, Center for Cultural Studies, Bard College, New York
“Telstra Adelaide Festival 2000”, Australia, Sydney
“Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: The Monument to a Lost Civilization”, Art Museum, University of South Australia, Adelaide
“Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: The Monument to a Lost Civilization”, Center for Contemporary Art, New Zealand
“The Red Wagon”, Wiesbaden Museum of Contemporary Art, Germany
“The Arriving Archieve”, Galerie der Stadt Bachnang, Germany
Ilya Kabakov Retrospective, Kunstmuseum Bern, Switzerland


Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac
“Ilya Kabakov. Zeichnungen”, Sprengelmuseum Hannover
“Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: The Monument to a Lost Civilization”, Cantieri Della Zisa, Palermo, Italy
“The Boat of my Life”, Duke University Museum
“The Old Library”, University ofAmsterdam
“The Life & Creativity of Charles Rosenthal”, Museum of Contemporary Art, Mito, Japan


Deweer Art Gallery, Otegem, Belgium, “A Meeting: Jan Fabre and Ilya Kabakov”
Kunsthalle, Bremen, “The Metaphysical Man,” permanent installation
The Roundhouse, London, “The Palace of Projects,” Ilya and Emilia Kabakov traveling to Manchester, Upper Campfield Market, and the Crystal Palace, Reina Sofia, Madrid (catalogue)
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Salzburg, “The Collector”
Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Antwerp, Belgium, “16 Installations” (catalogue)
Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin, “Treatment with Memories” (catalogue)
University of Champaign, Illinois (catalogue)
Moenchehaus Museum fuer Moderne Kunst, Goeslar, Germany, “My Grandfather’s Shed,” permanent installation
Manez & Soros Center, “Ilya Kabakov in Moscow” exhibtition and symposium
Stadtgallery, Heerlen, The Netherlands, “Retrospective of Drawings and Albums,” traveling to Sprengel Museum, Hannover, Germany


Galerie Weisses Schloss, Zürich, Switzerland, “It Happens Tomorrow”
1997 Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, “The Reading Room,”
Cap Street Project, San Francisco, “The Hospital: Five Confessions”
Hochhaus zur Palme, Zürich, “The fallen Chandellier”, permanent installation
Satani Gallery, Tokyo, Japan, “The Artist’s Library”
Barbara Gladstone Gallery, New York, “The Life of Flies”
Public Art Fund New York, “Monument to the Lost Glove”
Moderna Galeria, Ljubljana, “Twenty Ways of Getting an Apple listening to Mozart’s music” (catalogue)


Deichtorhallen Hamburg, Germany, “The Reading Room,” Retrospective (catalogue)
Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, Belgium, “On The Roof” (book)
Installation “Voices Behind the Door” (book)
Thea Westreich in collaboration with Barbara Gladstone Gallery, New York “Books: A Retrospective with Drawings”
Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, “The World of Ilya Kabakov”
Landeskulturzentrum, Salzau, Kiel, Germany, “Music on the Water,” permanent installation, music by V. Tarasov (book)
Kulturhus Copenhagen, “Ilya Kabakov, Storyteller”


Centre G. Pompidou, Paris, France, “C’est ici que nous vivons/We are living here” (book) “Installations 1983- 1995”
Festspielhaus Hellerau, Dresden, Germany, “The Boat of My Life. Unrealized Projects” (catalogue)
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris, France, “Le Collectioneur,” Installation (catalogue)
Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, “The School Library”
Kunstmuseum, Basel, “Ilya Kabakov. The sea of voices” (catalogue)
MAK Museum, Vienna, Austria, “No Water,” permanent installation
Museet For Samtidskunst, Oslo “The Man Who Never Threw Anything Away”, permanent installation


Art Center, Ohio, “Album of my Mother”
Art Center Reykjavic, “Unrealized Projects”
Jablonka Galerie, Cologne, Germany, “Ilya Kabakov: In the Apartment of Nicolai Victorovich”
Center for Contemporary Art, Warsaw, Poland, “Ilya Kabakov and Joseph Kosuth: The corridor of Two Banalities” (catalogue)
Le Magasin Grenoble, “Album of my Mother” (catalogue)
Barbara Weiss Gallery, Berlin, Germany, “Artist’s Despair or Conspiracy of Untalented”
The Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland, “Ilya Kabakov: Operation Room (Mother and Son),” (catalogue) “Five Albums”


Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany, “NOMA (Moscow Conceptual Circle installation)” (book)
Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands “Ilya Kabakov -The Big Archive” (catalogue)
Kunstverein, Salzburg, Austria, “The Boat of My Life”
Staatliche Hochschule fur Bildende Kunste-Stadelschule-, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, “The Empty Museum”


Kanaal Art Foundation, Belgium, “Illustration as a way to survive”
Deweer Art Gallery, Otegem, Belgium, “In Memory of Pleasant Recollections” (catalogue)
Galleria Sprovieri, Rome, Italy, “Ilya Kabakov” (catalogue)
RFFA, New York, “Incident at the Museum or Water Music” , music by Vladimir Tarasov, (travelling exhibition)
Galerie Dina Vierny, Paris, France, “On the Communal Kitchen, New Documents” (book)
Kölnischer Kunstverein, Köln, “Life of Flies” (book)
Krannert Art Museum and Kinkead Pavilion, Illinois, “He Lost His Mind, Undressed, Ran Away Naked”


Ateliers Municipaux d’Artistes, Marseille, Paris “52 Entretiens dans la Cuisine Communitaire,” Dialogue with Yuri Kuper, (traveled to Halle d’Art Contemporain, La Criee, Rennes, France) (catalogue)
The Power Plant, Toronto, Canada, “Ilya Kabakov (3 inst. from Ten Characters)” (catalogue)
Sezon Museum of Modern Art, Nagano
Peter Pakesch Gallery, Vienna, Austria, “The Targets”
Wewerka and Weiss Galerie, Berlin, Germany, “My Motherland/The Flies” (catalogue)
Dresden Bank, Frankfurt, Germany, “Ripped Off Landscape,” permanent installation


Neue Galerie of Museum Ludwig, Aachen, Germany, “The Ship”
Kasseler Kunstverein, Kassel, Germany, “Seven Exhibitions of one Painting” (catalogue)
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., “Ten Characters” (catalogue)
Fred Hoffman Gallery, Santa Monica, CA, “The Rope of Life & Other Installations” (catalogue)
RFFA, New York, “He Lost His Mind, Undressed, Ran Away Naked”


Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, “Who Are These Little Men?”
Kunsthalle, Zurich, “Communal Apartment – The Ship” (catalogue)
DAAD-Galerie, Berlin, Germany, “Exhibition of a Book” (catalogue)
Institute of Contemporary Art, London, England “The Untalented Artist and Other Characters” (catalogue)
Riverside Studios, London, England, “Ten Albums: Ten Characters”
Universität Sarrbrücken, “Two Albums”
The Genja Schreiber University Art Gallery, Tel Aviv, “The Beautiful 60s in Moscow”
Galerie de France, Paris, “Who Are These Little Men?” (catalogue)


Portikus, Frankfurt, Germany, “Ten Albums” (catalogue)
Kunstverein, Graz, Austria, “Before Supper” (catalogue)
Neue Galerie, Schlossli Gotzental, Dierikon, Switzerland, (with V. Pivovarov)
Kunstverein, Bonn, Germany (with E. Bulatov)
RFFA, New York, “Ten Characters”


Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Basel, Switzerland, (with I. Tschuikov), “The 60s-70s”


Neue Galerie, Schlossli Gotzental, Dierikon, Switzerland, “Concert for a Fly”


Kunsthalle, Bern, Switzerland, “Along the Margins,” catalogue, (traveled to Marseille, France; and Duesseldorf, Germany)
Dina Vierny Gallery, Paris, France, “Kabakov” (catalogue)