Wave of exhibitions by Native women artists hits New York

Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, War is Heck, 2002.
photo courtesy the Whitney Museum of American Art

“This is the largest wave we’ve ever had, and it’s more than a wave,” Forge Project’s Candice Hopkins tells CULTURED of this month’s spate of New York exhibitions by Native women artists. “I think that this time, it’s going to stick.”

From Jaune Quick-to-See Smith’s retrospective and a new sculptural installation by Rose B. Simpson, both at the Whitney, to solo presentations by Shelley Niro, Marie Watt, and Wendy Red Star, this moment is illustrative of the art world’s “desire to grapple with history at a moment that feels like it is changing rapidly in front of our eyes,” according to Whitney curator Laura Phipps.

But Hopkins notes that, aside from regional galleries and museums, the most powerful art world platforms “have been the most reluctant to both self-educate, and realize they cannot tell the history of American art in a partial way any longer,” she says. “We get the art history we are ready for.”

Read “‘We Get the History We Are Ready For’: Meet the Native Women Artists Claiming Their Place in New York” by Devorah Lauter.