Robert Irwin was born in Long Beach, California, in 1928, and studied at the Otis Art Institute (1948–50), Jepson Art Institute (1951), and Chinouard Art Institute (1952–54). Since his first solo exhibition in 1957, he has exhibited widely in galleries and museums in North America and abroad. In 1984 Irwin received a MacArthur Fellowship. In 1993 the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles initiated a major retrospective of his work, which subsequently traveled to Paris, Madrid, and Cologne. Among his numerous public projects, the most recent is the monumental garden he designed for the Getty Center in Los Angeles, which opened in 1997. He currently lives and works in San Diego.