Bill Jensen (born 1945 Minneapolis) came into prominence in the late 1970s in New York City. His work was exhibited at the New Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, at the Whitney Museum of American Art including 1981 Whitney Biennial, and the Museum of Modern Art. Recently, his work was shown at the New Bedford Whaling Museum in conjunction with its Albert Pinkham Ryder exhibition in 2021, and at MoMA PS1 in New York in 2016. Jensen earned his BFA and MFA from the University of Minnesota in 1968 and 1970, and relocated to New York City in 1971. He has lived and worked in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn since 1976.
Intuitive and visceral, Jensen’s abstractions have long been admired for their unconventional compositions and profound sense of color. Saturated, densely worked surfaces, seemingly primordial in origin, transcend any sense of the struggle that Jensen attributes to his painting process. For Jensen, a painting is successful only when the artist’s initial impulse and his material’s properties harmoniously converge; this can sometimes take several years to achieve. Defined by an amorphous, ever-changing search for resolution, Jensen’s results are ultimately determined by the act of painting itself.
Jensen's work is in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Boston Museum of Fine Art, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C., the Tate, London, the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.