Cy Twombly (1928–2011) was born in Lexington, Virginia. He studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (1947–49); the Art Students League, New York (1950–51); and Black Mountain College, North Carolina (1951–52). In the mid-1950s, following travels in Europe and Africa, he emerged as a prominent figure among a group of artists working in New York that included Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns.
"Cy Twombly's work can be understood as one vast engagement with cultural memory. His paintings, drawings and sculptures on mythological subjects have come to form a significant part of that memory." —Katharina Schmidt
The late American artist brought a distinctive approach to painting and sculpture that evades precise affiliation with the predominant movements of the twentieth century. Inspired by ancient Mediterranean history and geography, Greek and Roman mythology, and epic poetry, Twombly created a sometimes inscrutable world of iconography, metaphor, and myth. Instead of presenting us with a narrative that is fully present and intact, Twombly offers an incomplete archive of impressions on which our own experience must be bought to bear. The artist was invited to exhibit his work at the Venice Biennale in 1964, 1989, and 2001 when he was awarded the Golden Lion at the 49th Venice Biennale. In 2010, he was made Chevalier of the Légion d’Honneur by the French government. During fall 2010, Tacita Dean produced a film on Twombly, titled "Edwin Parker"