Best known for provocative depictions of the female body — both in anatomical fragments and in full figure — Kiki Smith has explored a broad range of subjects, including religion, folklore, mythology, natural science, art history, and feminism. By turns intimate, universal, visceral, and fragile, Smith’s art renders the figure in frank, nonheroic terms, expressing its dual aspects of vulnerability and strength. Smith uses a wide variety of media, seeking out equivalences between the body and materials of art — the fragility and imperfections of skin and handmade papers, for example, or the fleshy, organic volumes of wax and plaster. Organized in close collaboration with the artist, this full-scale survey of her 25-year career includes nearly 100 objects grouped into thematic clusters she refers to as “gatherings,” with works in plaster, bronze, paper, glass, and ceramic, as well as installations, prints, drawings, and photographs.
This exhibition is organized by the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and is made possible by generous support from the Elizabeth A. Sackler Museum Educational Trust. Additional support is provided by Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro, the Barbara Lee Family Foundation, and Lowry Hill Private Wealth Management.
Hotel sponsor: St. Regis Hotel, San Francisco