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kiki smith

biography

Kiki Smith was born in 1954 in Nuremberg, Germany. She lives and works in New York.

Smith is a New York-based artist and a leading figure in the international art world. The human form, especially the female body, became central to her work in the 1980s. She began to focus on themes of loss and death through her depiction of the body’s internal components, especially organs, cellular structures and the nervous system. The evacuation of these physiological components from the body presented anxieties surrounding the maternal body and the notion of the body as a receptacle for incorporeal components such as knowledge, belief and storytelling. By exposing its internal structures, Smith portrays the dichotomy between the psychological and physiological spheres of the body. In recent years, Smith’s work has evolved to incorporate animals, domestic objects and narrative tropes from classical mythology and folk tales. Her career, spanning more than three decades, is characterized by great sperimentation with techniques and materials: she employs a wide-range of non-traditional materials ranging from hair and latex to beeswax and gold to a diverse body of media that includes painting, photography, bookmaking, sculpture, drawing, and printmaking.

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Kiki Smith was born in 1954 in Nuremberg, Germany. She lives and works in New York.

Smith is a New York-based artist and a leading figure in the international art world. The human form, especially the female body, became central to her work in the 1980s. She began to focus on themes of loss and death through her depiction of the body’s internal components, especially organs, cellular structures and the nervous system. The evacuation of these physiological components from the body presented anxieties surrounding the maternal body and the notion of the body as a receptacle for incorporeal components such as knowledge, belief and storytelling. By exposing its internal structures, Smith portrays the dichotomy between the psychological and physiological spheres of the body. In recent years, Smith’s work has evolved to incorporate animals, domestic objects and narrative tropes from classical mythology and folk tales. Her career, spanning more than three decades, is characterized by great sperimentation with techniques and materials: she employs a wide-range of non-traditional materials ranging from hair and latex to beeswax and gold to a diverse body of media that includes painting, photography, bookmaking, sculpture, drawing, and printmaking.

Kiki Smith select solo exhibitions include: Kiki Smith, Monnaie de Paris, Paris (2019); Kiki Smith: Procession originated at the Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany and traveled to the Sara Hildén Art Museum, Tampere, Finland and the Belvedere, Vienna, Austria (2018).

Her work has been included in group exhibitions such as: Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare Nostrum, Venice Biennale, Complex of the Chiesa di Santa Maria delle Penitenti Fondamenta Cannaregio, Venice (2019); The Moon – From Inner Worlds to Outer Space, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark and traveled to Henie Onstad Kunstsenter, Oslo (2019); Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300–Now), The Met Breuer, New York (2018); The American Dream: Pop to the Present, British Museum, London and traveled to Fondation Custodia, Paris, France (2018).

Smith’s works are included in numerous prominent museum collections, such as the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Tate Gallery, London, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Some major retrospectives dedicated to her work were held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, in 2003-04, at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, in 2005-2006, at the Houston Museum, at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 2007, at the Brooklyn Museum, New York in 2009, at the Musée d’Art Moderne, Saint Etienne, in 2013. The travelling exhibition Kiki Smith: Her Home was hosted by Kunstmuseen Krefeldand and Kunsthalle Nürnberg. Her work has been featured at five Venice Biennales, including the 2017 edition.

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images

Capture, 2016

Crayon on handmade laid paper

40 × 59,1 cm; 48,8 × 67,5 cm framed

Gift, 2016

Crayon and glitter on handmade laid paper

52 × 72 cm; 59,9 × 79,4 cm framed

Sense, 2016

Crayon and colored pencil on handmade laid paper

52 × 72 cm; 59,7 × 79,4 cm framed

Send, 2016

Blackened bronze

36,2 × 91,4 × 30,5 cm overall with base; sculpture: 35,6 x 76,2 x 12,7 cm; pedestal: 101,6 x 91,4 x 30,5 cm

Surge, 2016

Blackened bronze

37,5 × 76,2 × 30,5 cm overall with base; sculpture: 36,8 x 56,5 x 7,6 cm; pedestal: 101,6 x 76,2 x 30,5

Shooting Star, 2015

Silver

25,7 × 21,6 × 7,6 cm overall; sculpture: 18,1 x 21,6 x 0,6 cm; stand: 15,2 x 19,1 x 7,6 cm

Haunted I, 2012

C-print

64,8 × 54 cm

Haunted II, 2012

C-print

64,8 × 54 cm

Haunted III, 2012

C-print

64,8 × 54 cm

Dwelling, 2012

Digital pigment print

50 × 55,8 cm

Untitled (Geneviève and the May Wolf), 2000

Chromogenic color print mounted to board

33,7 × 49,5 cm

Untitled (Geneviève and the May Wolf), 2000

Chromogenic color print mounted to board

33,3 × 49,5 cm

Untitled (Autumn), 2000

Chromogenic color print mounted to 2-ply board

33,7 × 48,9 cm

Untitled (Calling), 2000

Chromogenic color print

50,8 × 40,6 cm

Untitled (Silver Bones), 1996

chromogenic color print mounted to 2-ply board

50,8 × 76,2 cm

public exhibitions

Monnaie de Paris

Paris

Kiki Smith

18.10.2019 – 9.2.2020

Photo: Martin Argyroglo / Monnaie de Paris

Monnaie de Paris

Paris

Kiki Smith

18.10.2019 – 9.2.2020

Photo: Martin Argyroglo / Monnaie de Paris

Monnaie de Paris

Paris

Kiki Smith

18.10.2019 – 9.2.2020

Photo: Martin Argyroglo / Monnaie de Paris

Monnaie de Paris

Paris

Kiki Smith

18.10.2019 – 9.2.2020

Photo: Martin Argyroglo / Monnaie de Paris

Modern Art Oxford

Oxford

I am a Wanderer

28.9.2019 – 19.1.2020

© Modern Art Oxford. Photo by Ben Westoby.

Modern Art Oxford

Oxford

I am a Wanderer

28.9.2019 – 19.1.2020

© Modern Art Oxford. Photo by Ben Westoby.

Belvedere

Vienna

Kiki Smith: Procession

7.6 – 15.9.2019

Photo: Johannes Stoll, © Belvedere, Vienna

Belvedere

Vienna

Kiki Smith: Procession

7.6 – 15.9.2019

Photo: Johannes Stoll, © Belvedere, Vienna

Sara Hildén Art Museum

Tampere

Kiki Smith: Procession

9.2 – 12.5.2019

Photo: Jussi Koivunen / Sara Hildén Art Museum

Sara Hildén Art Museum

Tampere

Kiki Smith: Procession

9.2 – 12.5.2019

Photo: Jussi Koivunen / Sara Hildén Art Museum

Sara Hildén Art Museum

Tampere

Kiki Smith: Procession

9.2 – 12.5.2019

Photo: Jussi Koivunen / Sara Hildén Art Museum

DESTE Foundation Project Space

Slaughterhouse

Hydra

Kiki Smith: Memory

18.6 – 31.10.2019

Photo: Eftychia Vlachou

DESTE Foundation Project Space

Slaughterhouse

Hydra

Kiki Smith: Memory

18.6 – 31.10.2019

Photo: Eftychia Vlachou

DESTE Foundation Project Space

Slaughterhouse

Hydra

Kiki Smith: Memory

18.6 – 31.10.2019

Photo: Eftychia Vlachou

Haus der Kunst

Munich

Kiki Smith: Procession

2.2 – 3.6.2018

Photo: Maximilian Geuter

Haus der Kunst

Munich

Kiki Smith: Procession

2.2 – 3.6.2018

Photo: Maximilian Geuter

press

Kiki Smith

Kiki Smith reflects on her life and art

Sarah Moroz

Artforum

October 23, 2019

Artist Kiki Smith: ‘We all know we are in a precarious situation’

Caroline Roux

Financial Times

October 11, 2019

Kiki Smith e Alejandro Cesarco alla Galleria Raffaella Cortese

Valeria Montebello

L'Officiel Italia

January 22, 2018

I Myself Have Seen It: Photography and Kiki Smith, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary art, Arizona

Aesthetica

March 30, 2012

Family History and the History of Objects - Kiki Smith

Interview

Susan Sollins

Art21

September 2003

publications

Kiki Smith

Silvana Editoriale

Milano

2019

Kiki Smith. What I saw on the road

Demetrio Paparoni, Renata Pintus, Eike Schmidt

Giunti Editore

Florence

2019

Kiki Smith - Procession

Edited by Petra Giloy-Hirtz

Prestel

New York

2018

Kiki Smith: 2000 Words

Edited by: Karen Marta

DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art

Athens

2018

video


When fantasy meets popular folklore: Artist Kiki Smith’s work on display in Paris

2019

Video by France24 on the occasion of Kiki Smith's solo exhibition at Le Monnaie de Paris – 11 Conti


I Make Things to Experience the Process

2014

TateShots