Gwen Smith

Artist Biography:

Gwen Smith (b. 1968) received her BA from the University of Colorado, Boulder and later studied at the International Center of Photography. In the 90s, she worked as a Photography Assistant to Lorna Simpson and then as a Photography Research Editor for publications including Vogue and The New Yorker. Smith has been in exhibitions at institutions including MoMA PS1; the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA; Castelli Gallery, NY; and Huxley Parlour, London. She has collaborated with her partner Haim Steinbach since 1993. Smith has published multiple monographs including The Black Woman Project (Volumes 1-3) and Island. She is a 2021-22 Artist in Residence at The Center for Book Arts in NYC. Smith lives and works in Long Island City, New York.


Mother, Lover, Artist 

Smith (b. 1968- lives and works in LIC, NYC) has been amassing an archive of photographs, paintings and memories as the center cog in a web of coincidence and connectivity for most of her life. All the while it is her estrangement from the diaspora that fuels her creative process. 

In 2004 she became a mother to her son River and began to catalog a living archive of heriPhone photographs of found language referred to as The Message. In 2018 Smith began a ritual for creativity which became a collection of 100 paintings and selfies, The Black Woman Project. (Vol. 1). Then the pandemic came and 100 more paintings were completed so 2 volumes were published simultaneously in late 2020. The project continued in 2021 with (Vol. 3) and (Vol. 4) is underway. 

The fall of 2020 Smith came across seminal works which she made in college. The series of works are collaged photographs of herself in various states framing a central image and creating a portal to the current work. 

ORIGIN, a series of collage-paintings which examine the self-replicating rhythms of art and human biology.


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