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Ann Hamilton, (side by side.coats), 2018/2023, woolen coats and raw fleece; needle-felted, Courtesy of the artist

Screening of Talks by Woven Histories artists Ann Hamilton and Zoe Leonard  

Focus: Exhibitions

  • Saturday, May 4, 2024
  • 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • East Building Auditorium
  • Talks
  • In-person

In conjunction with the Woven Histories: Textiles and Modern Abstraction exhibition, we will be sharing two recorded talks by exhibition artists Ann Hamilton (2011) and Zoe Leonard (2018). These presentations were part of the Diamonstein-Spielvogel Lecture Series, which provides a forum for distinguished artists to discuss the genesis and evolution of their work in their own words.

11:00am screening: Ann Hamilton (70 minutes; recorded on September 16, 2011) 

Ann Hamilton (born 1956, Lima, Ohio) is a visual artist internationally acclaimed for her large-scale multimedia installations, public projects, and performance collaborations. She earned a BFA in textile design from the University of Kansas in 1979 and an MFA in sculpture from the Yale School of Art in 1985. From 1985 to 1991, she taught on the faculty of the University of California at Santa Barbara. Hamilton has served on the faculty of The Ohio State University since 2001, where she is a Distinguished University Professor in the department of art. Among her many honors, Hamilton has been the recipient of the National Medal of the Arts, Heinz Award, MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship, United States Artists Fellowship, NEA Visual Arts Fellowship, Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award, Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture, and Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship. She represented the United States in the 1991 Sao Paulo Bienal, the 1999 Venice Biennale, and has exhibited extensively around the world. Over 40 of her works are in the National Gallery’s collection, including photographs, prints, sculptures, and a video installation.

12:10pm screening: Zoe Leonard (54 minutes; recorded January 28, 2018) 

Zoe Leonard (born 1961, Liberty, New York) is acclaimed for her work in sculpture and photography made over the past three decades. While the subject matter in her photography ranges widely, it is informed by an incisive critical scrutiny of the conventions, protocols, and politics of image making and display. In 1993, filmmaker Cheryl Dunye approached Leonard about producing a trove of images recording the life and career of a fictional Black lesbian actress working in Hollywood in the early 20th century. Leonard constructed a resonant, multilayered album of the personal and professional life of the actress, Fae Richards, which includes film stills from roles she might have played and snapshots recording casual moments at leisure with friends and lovers. Period-specific costumes and props, as well as a variety of photographic processes and faux aging treatments contribute to the realism of the project without obscuring its invented origins. From this corpus of 82 images, some of which appeared briefly as props in Dunye’s film The Watermelon Woman (1996), Leonard created The Fae Richards Photo Archive, which she first exhibited at the 1997 Whitney Biennial and which was on view in the National Gallery’s 2018 exhibition Outliers and American Vanguard Art. This conversation with Outliers and Woven Histories exhibition curator Lynne Cooke places The Fae Richards Photo Archive within the context of Leonard’s career. Her works, I want a president and House, are represented in the National Gallery’s collection.