“I don’t try to address any issues in my work,” Kiki Smith (b. 1954) reveals. “My work has its own meandering course, and I try to follow it rather than impose any topical directive. We are certainly all affected by economic and global situations of the world. These, of course, impact our lives in sometimes overt and sometimes subtle manners, but there is no separation between our lives and our work. Work is, at best, a synthesis or a way for me to understand my life for a moment.”
Smith has mounted over 150 one-person exhibitions at institutions like the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, and Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona, where her exhibition Kiki Smith: Her Home examined a woman’s life from birth to death. From 2005 through 2007, the artist’s retrospective, organized by the Walker Art Center, traveled around North America. Smith works in a wide range of media, from sculpture to prints; she has recently turned to stained glass and installation.
Smith was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2005. She received the Athena Award for Excellence in Printmaking from RISD in 2005 and the Edward MacDowell Medal and Brooklyn Museum’s Women in the Arts honors in 2009.