American, born 1960, lives in New York City.
Raised in the South Bronx, Glenn Ligon earned his BA in 1982 from Wesleyan University and later studied in the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program (1985). He is most known for his paintings of literary text, usually borrowed from pivotal African American writers such as James Baldwin and Ralph Ellison. His work has been exhibited widely throughout the United States, including one-person exhibitions at the Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis (2000); the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (1998); and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1996). Curator Thelma Golden included Ligon in her acclaimed 1994 group exhibition entitled Black Male: Representations of Masculinity in Contemporary American Art, organized for the Whitney Museum of American Art. For that exhibition, Ligon created a collaborative project with Byron Kim—a punching bag with stenciled text.