Richard Serra was born in San Francisco in 1938 and has lived in New York since 1966. He studied at the University of California (Berkeley and Santa Barbara) and at Yale University. He was awarded the insignia of Chevalier de la légion d'honneur by the French government in June 2015.
Institutional collections include The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Dia Art Foundation, Beacon, New York; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; LACMA, Los Angeles; The Broad, Los Angeles; Tate Modern, London; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Serralves Foundation, Oporto, Portugal; Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin; and Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain, among many others.
Serra's earliest solo exhibitions were held at Galleria La Salita, Rome (1966), and Leo Castelli Warehouse, New York (1969). His first solo museum exhibition was presented at The Norton Simon Museum (formerly Pasadena Art Museum) in 1970. Selected recent solo institutional exhibitions include “Richard Serra: Weight and Measure Drawings,” American Academy in Rome, Italy (2000); “Sculpture and Drawing by Richard Serra,” The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, St. Louis, Missouri (2003); “Richard Serra: Focus Installation,” St. Louis Museum of Art, Missouri (2003); “Richard Serra,” Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Naples, Italy; “Richard Serra: The Matter of Time,” Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain (2005); “Richard Serra Sculpture: Forty Years,” The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2007); “Richard Serra, Drawings: Work Comes Out of Work,” Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (2008); “Promenade,” Monumenta, Grand Palais, Paris (2008); “Richard Serra Drawing: A Retrospective,” The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2011, travelled to San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California; and the organizing venue, The Menil Collection, Houston); “Richard Serra: Drawings for The Courtauld,” The Courtauld Gallery, London (2013); “Richard Serra,” Qatar Museum Authority, Doha (2014); and “Richard Serra: Drawings in the Gávea House,” Instituto Moreira Salles, Rio de Janeiro (2014).
Serra participated in Documenta in 1972, 1977, 1982, and 1987; and La Biennale di Venezia in 1980, 1984, 2001, and 2013. He was awarded the Golden Lion in 2001. In 2005, The Matter of Time (1994–2005), a series of eight monumental sculptures, was permanently installed at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao. In 2014, East-West/West-East (2014) was permanently installed in the desert of the Brouq Nature Reserve in Western Qatar.
Since 1983, Gagosian has presented more than thirty major exhibitions of Serra's sculptures and drawings in the United States and Europe.