The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth Announces
Jaune Quick-to-See Smith: Memory Map
On View October 15, 2023-January 21, 2024Organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, the exhibition, on view at the Modern from October 15, 2023 through January 21, 2024, is a recognition of a groundbreaking artist’s work. For nearly five decades Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, a citizen of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Nation, has charted an exceptional and unorthodox career as an artist, activist, curator, educator, and advocate. The exhibition highlights how Smith uses her drawings, prints, paintings, and sculptures to flip mainstream historical narratives and illuminate absurdities in the dominant culture.
Memory Map is the largest and most comprehensive showcase of Smith’s career, featuring more than one hundred works. Organized thematically, the exhibition offers a new framework to consider contemporary Native American art, addressing how Smith has initiated and led some of the most pressing dialogues around land, racism, and cultural preservation. It celebrates the artist’s dedication to creativity and community, emphasizes her deep political commitments, and offers essential and potent reminders of our responsibilities to the earth and each other.
Smith engages with modern and contemporary modes of artmaking, from an idiosyncratic adoption of abstraction to American Pop Art to Neo-Expressionism. She reimagines these artistic traditions with concepts rooted in her own cultural practice to examine contemporary life in America and interpret it through Native ideology. Since the 1970s, Smith has built a visual language that includes recurring imagery such as trade canoes, horses, bison, and flags, alongside common materials like newspaper, fabric, and commercial objects. Throughout her work she addresses urgent concerns about ecological disaster, the misreading of history, and the genocide of Native Americans, while also evoking the power of kinship and education.
This exhibition is organized by Laura Phipps, Associate Curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art, with Caitlin Chaisson, Curatorial Project Assistant.
“Through her sophisticated use of color, materials, and humor, Smith’s work prompts important conversations about history and education—and ultimately about the obligations we have to each other and the world around us,” says Phipps. “From the inception of Memory Map, Smith and I had hoped for her messages and her art to reach audiences across the country and we are so thrilled to see them in the context of the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.”
"The Modern is honored to host Jaune Quick-To-See Smith: Memory Maps. We are grateful to collaborate with the artist and the Whitney Museum on this important exhibition," says Dr. Marla Price, Director, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. "This is the first large-scale presentation of Jaune Quick-To-See Smith's work in our region, giving our community and visitors the opportunity to experience the important stories she tells throughout her groundbreaking career.”