August 23, 2014–March 1, 2015

Shinique Smith

Bright Matter

Contemporary artist Shinique Smith returns to Boston with new exhibition of paintings, sculpture, installations, video, and performance.

For the past decade, Shinique Smith (American, born in 1971) has been internationally admired for exuberant paintings, sculpture, and large-scale installations that capture the power of human expression and resilience. Whether in graffiti, calligraphy, and vibrant sweeping strokes on canvas; patterned clothing densely clustered or hung as human forms; or even full-body impressions pressed in ink against walls, her works reflect intersecting forces—of personal history, influence, and energy. “Shinique Smith: BRIGHT MATTER” surveys 30 key works from the past decade while debuting more than a dozen new pieces, including painting, sculpture, full-room installation, video, and performance. The exhibition marks a significant return to Boston for Smith, who completed her Masters in Teaching at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and Tufts (2000) while working full-time with high school students. Her exhibition at the MFA fosters new connections to the Boston community, inspiring family art activities at the Museum, projects with the MFA's Teen Arts Council, and more.

Smith's design for a 70-by-70-foot mural debuted in late September at Downtown Boston's Dewey Square Park on the Rose F. Kennedy Greenway.

See the mural, Seven Moon Junction, come to life.

Above: Shinique Smith, Splendid (detail), 2014. Ink, acrylic, fabric and collage, ribbon, rope and yarn on wood panel. Courtesy of the artist and James Cohan Gallery, New York/Shanghai. © Shinique Smith

  • Henry and Lois Foster Gallery (Gallery 158)


Sponsored by Celebrity Cruises.

Presented with generous support from the Robert and Jane Burke Fund for Exhibitions, The Contemporaries, and the Callaghan Family Fund for Contemporary Exhibitions. Additional support provided by the Eugenie Prendergast Memorial Fund, made possible by a grant from Jan and Warren Adelson.

"Shinique Smith: BRIGHT MATTER" continues a series of annual exhibitions focused on internationally known SMFA graduates of the past decade whose work is exemplary of the excellence, innovation and influence of SMFA alums.

Performance Art at the MFA is supported by Lorraine Bressler.