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Nari Ward, Sun Splashed
Installation view
The Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia
June 24...

NARI WARD
Smart Tree, 2016
A High Line Commission, April 2016–March 2017.
Photo...

Nari Ward: Sun Splashed
Installation view at Pérez Art Museum Miami
November 19, 2015...

Nari Ward, Breathing Directions
Installation view
September 9 - November 1, 2015
Courtesy of t...

Nari Ward, Breathing Directions
Installation view
September 9 - November 1, 2015
Cour...

Nari Ward: So Called
Installation view,
SCAD Museum of Art
February 5 - June 27, 2015...

NARI WARD
Breathing Panel: Oriented Right, 2015
oak wood, copper sheet, copper nails, darken...

NARI WARD
Breathing Panel #4, 2015
oak wood, copper sheet, copper nails, darkenin...

NARI WARD
Spellbound, 2015
salvaged store, piano, used keys, spanish moss, light, audio and ...

NARI WARD
Oprama, 2014
shoelaces, shipping barrel
72 x 44 x 16 inches (overall approx...

Nari Ward
Amazing Grace, 1993
Installation view, NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash a...

NARI WARD
Bottle Field, 2013
bottle, stool, cane, chalk boards, seeds, education poster, spr...

Nari Ward, Liberty and Orders
Installation view
Lehmann Maupin, 201 Chrystie Street, Ne...

NARI WARD
T.P. Reign Bow, 2012
wood, blue tarp, brass grommets, zippers, human hair, taxidermy fox

NARI WARD
Homeland Sweet Homeland, 2012
cloth, plastic, megaphones, razor wire, feathers, chains, and...

NARI WARD
Blank Scale, 2012
blankets, clothes, wood, chain
96 x 108 x 44 inches
243.8 x...

NARI WARD
Great Reburn, 2012
plexiglass, aluminum, linen, flag ash, gesso, aluminet shade cloth
...

NARI WARD
We the People, 2011
shoelaces
LM15178
photo by Will Brown
Cou...

NARI WARD
SoulSoil, 2011
earth, ceramic toilet fixtures, shoes, broom and mop handles, acrylic and po...

NARI WARD
Mango Tourist, 2011
foam, battery canisters, Sprague Electric Company resistors an...

NARI WARD, LIVESupport
Installation view
Lehmann Maupin, 540 West 26th Street, New York

NARI WARD
CarouSoul, 2011
rope, tires, metal support, shoe tips, shoe tongues, and tire...

NARI WARD
China Idle, 2010
used shoes, car tires, metal, screws
86.5 x 39.5 x 39.5 in...

NARI WARD
Palace LiquorsouL, 2010
metal and neon sign, wood with artificial flowers, shoelac...

NARI WARD
Riot Gate Skull side view, 2010
stencil ink, metal gates, shoe tips and laces, 3 m...

NARI WARD
Star of life, 2010
stencil ink, vinyl Chase construction banner, felt weather seal...

NARI WARD
AfroChase, 2010
stencil ink, vinyl Chase construction banner, cowrie shells, afro ...

NARI WARD
The new dress, 2010
stencil ink and psychological study cards on paper
16 x...

NARI WARD
Live Ball, 2010
shoe laces installation
112 x 76 inches
284.5 x 193 ...

NARI WARD
Swing, 2010
shoe tips, car tire, shoe tongues, rope
32 x 32 x 16 inches (ti...

NARI WARD
Diamond Gym: Action Network, 2008
Installation view, Prospect.1 New Orleans
...

NARI WARD
Land, 2006
metal, parachute materials, barrier cloth, wheels, wood, and audio

NARI WARD
Airplane Tears, 2005
found TV backs and facial tissue
dimensions variable

NARI WARD
Crusader, 2005
plastic bags, metal, shopping cart, tropy elements, tar extract, ch...

NARI WARD
Glory, 2004
oil barrel, fluorescent & ultraviolet tubes, computer parts, dvd, ...

NARI WARD
Geography: Bottle Messenger, 2002
Bottles, lettres, wire and metal frame
90...

Museum Exhibitions & Projects

Artist Bio

Nari Ward

PRESS

Museum Magazine

August 31, 2017

PRESS

Artnet

May 18, 2017

PRESS

The New York Times

January 27, 2017

News

The New York Times

July 8 2016

News

Nari Ward brings Mango Tourists and other exotics to the Barnes Foundation The Philadelphia Inquirer

June 25 2016

News

Nari Ward: The story behind an artwork in the artist's own words Modern Painters

June 1 2016

News

Sculpture Finds a Parking Space on the High Line Wall Street Journal

April 30 2016

News

Sculpture Finds a Parking Space on the High Line Wall Street Journal

April 27 2016

News

An Artist and a Poet Capture Death in a Hospice Room T Magazine

April 16 2016

News

A Sense of Placeness High Line Magazine

April 14 2016

News

Homegrown philanthropy fuels the new Speed Art Museum The Art Newspaper

March 10 2016

News

Video: Nari Ward show at Pérez Art Museum Miami Miami Herald

February 21 2016

News

The Historical and Fictional Worlds of Nari Ward Hyperallergic

February 11 2016

News

Nari Ward with Nicole Smythe-Johnson Miami Rail

December 12 2015

News

Nari Ward’s found object sculptures explore history and power Financial Times

December 4 2015

News

Book Signing with Nari Ward Pérez Art Museum Miami

December 3 2015

News

Nari Ward Looks Back at Two Decades of Work in "Sun Splashed" at PAMM

November 28 2015

News

Art Basel Week 2015 Guide: At the Museums Miami Herald

November 26 2015

News

In 'Breathing Directions,' Nari Ward Gathers Layers of African-American History New York Times

October 30 2015

News

Nari Ward at Lehmann Maupin Art in America

October 30 2015

News

25 Most Collectable Midcareer Artists: Nari Ward Artnet

September 30 2015

News

See: Nari Ward's Breathing Directions New York Magazine

September 26 2015

News

Timeless Symbols Pack Nari Ward’s Sculptures with Meaning The Creators Project

September 24 2015

News

Nari Ward BOMB Magazine

September 17 2015

News

Nari Ward: Breathing Directions at Lehmann Maupin Elephant Magazine

September 16 2015

PRESS

Forbes

March 27, 2015

PRESS

Forbes

March 25, 2015

PRESS

Forbes

March 24, 2015

PRESS

Design & Trend

March 10, 2015

News

Nari Ward’s "Divination X" to Grace Gardner Museum Façade Boston Magazine

January 5 2015

PRESS

Artnet News

June 9, 2014

PRESS

Sculpture Magazine

June 2013

PRESS

Frieze

May 2013

News

Mousse Magazine Nari Ward interviewed by Anna Daneri

April 2013

News

New York Times Review 'NYC 1993' Exhibition at New Museum

February 14, 2013

PRESS

The New York Times

February 14, 2013

News

Whitewall Magazine Installation View: Nari Ward's 1993

February 1, 2013

PRESS

Whitewall

February 1, 2013

News

New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York Nari Ward: Amazing Grace

January 17 - April 21, 2013

PRESS

The Wall Street Journal

January 16, 2013

PRESS

ARTnews

January 2013

PRESS

The Brooklyn Rail

April 30, 2012

PRESS

New York Observer

April 27, 2012

PRESS

Huffington Post

April 8, 2012

News

Nari Ward Receives Rome Prize

April 2012

PRESS

Designboom

March 31, 2012

PRESS

Artinfo

March 27, 2012

PRESS

Modern Painters

January 31, 2012

PRESS

Philadelphia Weekly

November 2, 2011

PRESS

International Review of African American Art

November 30, 2010

PRESS

ARTnews

April 30, 2010

PRESS

Art in America

April 30, 2010

PRESS

Artforum

April 30, 2010

PRESS

The New York Times

April 2, 2010

PRESS

Frieze

December 31, 2008

PRESS

The New Yorker

November 24, 2008

PRESS

The New York Times

August 24, 2007

PRESS

Sculpture

March 31, 2006

PRESS

Sculpture

April 30, 2005

PRESS

Art in America

November 30, 2004

PRESS

V Magazine

December 31, 2001

PRESS

The New York Times

August 6, 2000

PRESS

The Observer

October 27, 1997

PRESS

The New York Times

August 10, 1997

PRESS

The Village Voice

October 9, 1996

PRESS

Flash Art

September 30, 1996

PRESS

Elle

June 30, 1995

Artist Bio

Nari Ward

Nari Ward (b. 1963, St. Andrew, Jamaica; lives and works in New York) is known for his sculptural installations composed of discarded material found and collected in his neighborhood. He has repurposed objects such as baby strollers, shopping carts, bottles, doors, television sets, cash registers and shoelaces, among other materials. Ward re-contextualizes these found objects in thought-provoking juxtapositions that create complex, metaphorical meanings to confront social and political issues surrounding race, poverty, and consumer culture. He intentionally leaves the meaning of his work open, allowing the viewer to provide his or her own interpretation.

 

One of his most iconic works, Amazing Grace, was produced as part of his 1993 residency at The Studio Museum in Harlem in response to the AIDS crisis and drug epidemic of the early 1990s. For this large-scale installation, Ward gathered more than 365 discarded baby strollers—commonly used by the homeless population in Harlem to transport their belongings—which he bound with twisted fire hoses in an abandoned fire station in Harlem. Echoing through the space was an audio recording of gospel singer Mahalia Jackson’s Amazing Grace on repeat. The lyrics speak about redemption and change, generating optimism and a sense of hope. As with most of his work, this installation explored themes informed by the materials, community, and location in which he was working. The work has since been recreated at the New Museum Studio 231 space in 2013, and in several locations across Europe. With each change of context, the significance of the work changes as each community differently associates with these found objects.

 

Nari Ward received a BA from City University of New York, Hunter College in 1989, and an MFA from City University of New York, Brooklyn College in 1992. Solo exhibitions of his work have been organized at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2017); Socrates Sculpture Park, New York (2017); The Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia (2016); Pérez Art Museum Miami (2015); Savannah College of Art and Design Museum of Art, Savannah, GA (2015); Louisiana State University Museum of Art, Baton Rouge, LA (2014); The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia (2011); Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, MA (2011); Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston (2002); and Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN (2001, 2000). Select group exhibitions featuring his work include Objects Like Us, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT (forthcoming, 2018-2019); UPTOWN: nastywomen/badhombres, El Museo del Barrio, New York (2017); Black: Color, Material, Concept, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York (2015); The Great Mother, the Fondazione Nicola Trussardi, Palazzo Reale, Milan (2015); The Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (2015); NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star, New Museum, New York (2013); Contemplating the Void: Interventions in the Guggenheim Rotunda, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2010); the Whitney Biennial, New York (2006); and Landings, Documenta XI, Kassel, Germany (2003). Ward’s work is in numerous international public and private collections, including Baltimore Museum of Art, MD; the Brooklyn Museum, New York; Istanbul Modern; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC; Pérez Art Museum Miami; Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KY; The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

 

Ward has received numerous honors and distinctions such as the Joyce Award, The Joyce Foundation, Chicago (2015), and the Rome Prize, American Academy of Rome (2012), and awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the National Endowment for the Arts, New York Foundation for the Arts, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Ward has also received commissions from the United Nations and the World Health Organization.